Thurlow Nunn League round-up: Norwich United hitman Matt Blake closes on a remarkable century of goals
Rampant Matt Blake went nap as he closed in on a stunning century of Norwich United goals.
The former Thetford Town hitman destroyed Ipswich Wanderers with a five-goal salvo on Saturday to inspire the champions' latest Premier Division triumph. He has hit the net a remarkable 26 times in 20 appearances this campaign to take his phenomenal record to an almost goal-a-game 71 in 73 since the beginning of last term.
A first-season haul of 27 goals in 50 games means that Blake has now bagged 98 goals in 123 appearances in all competitions since moving to Plantation Park in the summer of 2013.
This weekend's display of sharpshooting saw the goal-machine score a hat-trick inside 36 minutes as United powered their way to a comfortable East Anglian non-league derby success. Blake added two more in the 6-2 away win – which leaves Damian Hilton's men with a 14-point cushion at the top of the table – while Adam Hipperson also got his name on the scoresheet.
Blake said on Twitter: 'My manager told me I was 'out of this world today'. Well done boys! What a day!'
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Elsewhere in the top-flight, goals from Ross King and substitute Miguel Lopez helped Kirkley & Pakefield edge Hadleigh United 2-1. Gorleston suffered only their second defeat in 10 matches when they went down 3-0 at Brantham Athletic.
Swaffham Town and Fakenham Town saw their fixtures fall foul of the wet weather with the latter dropping to the bottom of the standings as a result of their inactivity and Saffron Walden Town's come-from-behind 3-1 success against Whitton United.
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In the four First Division Knockout Cup matches to beat the weather, Great Yarmouth Town, Stowmarket Town, March Town United and Halstead Town triumphed to book their place in the second round. Yarmouth won 2-1 at Downham Town – despite ending the game with 10 men after Thomas Daniels' dismissal – thanks to goals from Connor Deeks and Jay Turner. Diss Town were beaten 2-0 at home by Halstead while a very youthful King's Lynn Town Reserves did themselves proud at Stowmarket Town, despite losing the game 1-0.
EDITOR'S NOTE: An editorial error originally stated that Matt Blake had reached 100 goals for Norwich United this weekend but this error has since been highlighted and corrected.