NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Jack is already a best Friend for March Town - but he becomes the enemy of his former club with debut hat-trick
- Credit: Archant
New signing Jack Friend made an instant impact with a debut hat-trick to help March Town roar to Fenland derby glory . . . and his former club were on the receiving end.
Friend joined the Hares from Wisbech St Mary late last week and helped his new club beat his old team-mates 5-0 in a Thurlow Nunn League First Division North clash at the GER last Saturday.
Captain Max Mattless broke the deadlock 10 minutes before half-time after Rob Conyard headed a Jack Rawson free-kick back across the face of goal.
Saints were then reduced to 10 men when Sol Goodby was dismissed on the stroke of half-time for a lunging challenge on Hares defender Jamie Short.
And Brett Whaley’s men quickly made the most of their numerical advantage to double the lead through Friend’s first goal for the club as he nodded in a Dylan Kilford cross.
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Friend went on to strike twice more in the second period before Conyard completed the scoring with a quarter-of-an-hour to go as March claimed their biggest win of an exciting campaign.
Boss Whaley said: “We were looking for a reaction after going out of a cup to another set of local rivals in our previous game – and we certainly got it.
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“It’s a substantial win an even better that it arrived in a derby. It was a scrappy, horrible game for half-an-hour, but we kept doing the right things and got our rewards.
“Jack could hardly have enjoyed a better debut. He is a player with a great knack of getting in goalscoring positions and he takes plenty of chances as well.
“He scored four goals in his final game for Wisbech St Mary and then hit a hat-trick in his first game for us.
“Jack’s focus is now on helping us to finish as high as we can in the league table and his contribution last Saturday will certainly help that.”
The derby drubbing provided a first defeat for new Wisbech St Mary boss Joe Simpson, who replaced Arran Duke in the hotseat earlier this month.
Duke was sacked by Saints after 10 years in charge and has now taken on a new role at March. He is working with the Hares’ Under 18 and reserve sides, and also carrying out some scouting duties for Whaley.
March now go to Cornard this Saturday, 3pm.