Miserable week for March Town
IT HAS been a miserable week for March Town United - a league defeat and another long-term injury on Saturday followed by a cup exit and two sendings-off on Tuesday. March were looking to get back to winning ways in the Ridgeons First Division on Saturday
IT HAS been a miserable week for March Town United - a league defeat and another long-term injury on Saturday followed by a cup exit and two sendings-off on Tuesday.
March were looking to get back to winning ways in the Ridgeons First Division on Saturday when they entertained Great Yarmouth Town.
And when Teddy Rimmell converted a penalty midway through the first half, the Hares looked to be on their way to three precious points.
But then things began to go wrong. On the half-hour mark, keeper Trevor Marshall sustained a knee injury as he attempted to clear the ball, which not only led to him being carried off but also gifted Great Yarmouth with the equaliser.
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March had no option but to field young midfielder Jack McEwan in goal and he was unable to stop the visitors scoring a long-range effort in each half to seal victory.
Matters went from bad to worse on Tuesday evening, when March were dumped out of the Ridgeons First Division Knockout Cup by the league's bottom side Godmanchester Rovers.
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Rovers were gifted the opportunity to take the lead on seven minutes when Danny Leafe slipped in the area and the ball stuck his arm as he attempted to clear the ball.
The visitors took advantage to convert the spot kick despite the best efforts of March keeper Adam Wright.
The Hares were limited to long-range efforts and once again, their injury curse came back to haunt them when Leafe was forced to leave the field.
Newly-signed striker Mark Newton came close to levelling the scores on the half-hour but his shot on the turn deflected in a crowded penalty area and crept agonisingly over the bar.
However, March were back on level terms three minutes later thanks to a 25-yard screamer by Rob Menarry.
Paul Cousins picked up a yellow card as March began to find their feet and the home side seemed to be back in the driving seat during the early exchanges of the second half.
Paul Shafer forced a good save from the Yarmouth keeper but three minutes later he received a straight red card following a crude challenge from behind and head-to-head contact with an opposing player.
Despite the loss of Shafer, March almost took the lead on 37 minutes when a free kick was met by the head of Paul Cousins and he saw his effort saved on the line.
But Yarmouth broke forward and less than a minute later, a cross from the right was half-volleyed home at the back post.
Substitute Stuart Warby almost got onto the end of Harry Roe's through ball but he was denied by the keeper and as time ran out, the night got worse for March when Cousins received a second yellow card for kicking the ball away.
March co-manager Alan Russell said: "We are not playing well at the moment and that is certainly true for the last two games.
"But we are also getting our share of bad luck and although we have brought in new players we are losing them to injury and suspension."
He added: "I had a chat with Paul Shafer and Paul Cousins after the game and told them that they had let themselves, their team and their club down. Both of them lost their discipline - its as simple as that."
Russell said: "We still need new players but it is difficult to get them at this time of the year. Until then we just have to keep going and try to turn our fortunes around."
Danny Leafe is 50/50 for the match at fellow strugglers Long Melford on Saturday. Striker Stuart Seales may be available to make his debut and keeper Trevor Marshall is out for at least a month.