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Brock gives Uckfield a badgering

By Pitchside View

UNSUNG midfielder Jake Brocklebank was immense on Saturday as his tenacity was pivotal to Peacehaven’s 3-1 win.

Brocklebank (pictured) was all over the middle of the park, and relished the challenge that AFC Uckfield brought to The Sports Park. And coupled with his combative attitude, his use of the ball from dead ball situations was superb. He even crowned his performance with a superbly taken and crucial penalty in the 66th minute when the score and game was in the balance at 1-1.

With both teams each making several changes, the game had a different feel about it compared to the recent high-tempo RUR Cup semi-final encounter between the two sides. And certainly during the first half the game felt a bit like an end of season encounter with both sides committed, but not going the extra mile.

It was the visitors who showed first when in the eighth minute Alieu Secka in the Haven goal was one on one with the attacker and managed to block the effort.

Peacehaven were beginning to edge proceedings and in the 13th minute the impressive Jack McDonnell who was making his first start for the first team, sent in a delicious cross. It brushed the top of Callum Hart’s head and the ball fell to Curt Ford who fired home from close range.

Uckfield did respond, but relied on the long ball and barely threatened Secka’s goal in the first period.

On 24 minutes, Brocklebank sent in one of his free kicks. The ball fell to Ford, but his shot was blocked, the ball then fell to defender Jonathan Gbla, the scorer of a wonder goal at Shoreham last week, and his effort was saved on the line by a grateful Alex Harris in the Uckfield goal.

As the half was drawing to a close, the visitors did ramp things up a bit but still the mighty and imposing figure of Gbla marshalled his defence superbly and the backline stood firm.

On 35 minutes, Tyler Scrafton went off with a reoccurrence of a groin injury and was replaced by Gus Burton. Two minutes later a brilliant 20 yard effort from Matt Cheeseman went just over the bar.

Half time: Peacehaven & Telscombe 1, AFC Uckfield 0.

Peacehaven were first to show in the second half when they had an effort which hit the side netting. And then on 59 minutes, the potential face of the game changed when Ryan Welch levelled things up for the visitors after a free kick into the Haven box wasn’t dealt with.

Clearly buoyed by their goal, Uckfield came more into the game but still were playing mainly direct, route one football and were not over troubling Peacehaven.

On 62 minutes manager Mark Shutt took off goal scorer Curt Ford and brought on Josh Marshall. Marshall re-signed for the club in January but for the last five weeks had been side lined with an ankle injury picked up while playing for the reserves.

And then on 66 minutes, Burton went on a brilliant driving run into the Uckfield box. The diminutive striker had his ankle clipped and a penalty was awarded after the referee had consulted with the linesman. Brocklebank, with ice running through his veins and nerves of steel, made no mistake and scored his first goal of the season.

Uckfield began to chase the game and after losing possession just inside the Haven half, the ball was passed out to Marshall who bore down on the Uckfield goal. With a defender in hot pursuit he unleashed a bullet of a shot from 18 yards which went into the top right hand corner and produced the loudest cheer of the afternoon from the crowd, with all the home supporters to a fan delighted that Marshall was back to doing what he does best... scoring goals for Peacehaven.

Final score: Peacehaven & Telscombe 3, AFC Uckfield 1.

Peacehaven & Telscombe: Secka, Amarteifo, McDonnell, Grant, Cheesman, Gbla, Legrange, Brocklebank, Ford, Scrafton, Hart. Subs: Phillips, Burton, Marshall. Tyrell, Massen.

Attendance: 187.

Peacehaven are next in action on Tuesday evening when they are away to Eastbourne Utd in a re-arranged fixture. And on Saturday March 16 Peacehaven are at home to Arundel which is also the club’s annual and traditional Ladies’ Day.

Updated 10:56 - 10 Mar 2019 by Pitchside View

Where next?

Pictures from Saturday's game CLUB photographer Steve Mills covered Saturday's game against Uckfield.
Haven at home on Saturday AFC UCKFIELD visit The Sports Park on Saturday, their second visit in eleven days.

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