Ryman North: Dereham Town 3 Maldon & Tiptree 1
- Credit: IAN BURT
Dereham recovered from an early setback to record a convincing victory at Aldiss Park – although the latter stages of the game were over-shadowed by a head injury to young striker Liam Upton.
The Magpies substitute was taken to hospital, with the players returning to their dressing rooms until the ambulance arrived, and after a lengthy delay the game resumed.
Fortunately there was good news for Upton, who was allowed home after treatment.
'Glad to report that Liam has been checked over and has no further damage,' said Magpies boss Matt Henman. 'He's home and will be fine after some rest.'
Dereham had gone behind in the seventh minute when much-travelled striker Cliff Akurang headed home Jack Stevenson's cross.
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But Dereham equalised four minutes later when Aaron Kay beat visiting keeper Lewis Devonish with a precise free-kick from 20 yards after Michael Clunan had been impeded.
Both sides continued to search for openings but there were no further chances until Dereham's Lewis Sturman and Craig Bussens combined to set Ryan Hawkins free on the right and his superb low cross sped across the visiting box to safety.
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From their next attack Frazer Blake-Tracy's ball from the left fell to Hawkins with the talented midfielder dribbling past two defenders before drilling home a low right-foot drive to restore Dereham's lead in the 30th minute.
Maldon & Tiptree were denied just before the break when keeper Andy Wilton tipped Akurang's goalbound header over and the points were wrapped up in the 58th minute when Clunan lifted a free-kick into the area and Matt Hockley headed home.
Dereham: Wilton, Ward, Blake-Tracy, Sturman, Howard, Morphew, Kay, Clunan, Bussens, Madon, Hawkins. Subs: Bailey, Hockley, Page, Upton.
Maldon & Tiptree: Moore, Devonish, Hunter, Glover, Bouamrane, Greenfield, Stevenson, Lette-Jallow, Akurang, Adewunni, Koranteng. Subs: Ouinsan, Andrews, Thomas.
Referee: P Burnham.