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Hethersett stretch lead at top

PUBLISHED: 16:57 06 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:22 03 June 2010

HETHERSETT Athletic Ladies extended their lead at the top of the Eastern Region Premier Division to 13 points with a hard-earned 2-0 victory over Bedford Ladies.

HETHERSETT Athletic Ladies extended their lead at the top of the Eastern Region Premier Division to 13 points with a hard-earned 2-0 victory over Bedford Ladies.

Hethersett's only rivals for the title - Norwich City - were without a match and now have four games in hand on the leaders.

Hethersett know, however, that victory in their final four games will make sure of the title and promotion.

The match against Bedford was spoiled as a spectacle by a very strong wind that made good football virtually impossible. Going down the slope and into the wind in the first half, Hethersett were forced to play a patient game. They missed a golden chance to take the lead after 28 minutes when Sophie Fuller fired wide from the penalty spot after a handball.

Hethersett continued to push forward whenever possible and took the lead a minute before half-time when Fuller made up for her spot kick misery when she headed home after good work on the right by Nicola Bray.

The second half was dominated by the home side with Hethersett keeper Nikki Wigg a virtual spectator. Despite numerous chances, however, Hethersett were restricted to just one goal - a fine 25-yard drive from Kelly Gray after 75 minutes. Athletic should have increased their lead when they were awarded a second penalty for a foul just inside the box. This time Nicola Stolworthy hit a weak kick straight at the keeper.

As the game reached its conclusion Bedford began to lose their discipline and their coach was sent off for abusive remarks to the referee.

This Sunday Hethersett begin their run-in with the first of four away games when they visit Cambridge University looking for their fifth consecutive league win. University are one of only three teams to have beaten Hethersett in the league this season - 1-0 at Easton College in October. Athletic will be very aware that any slip ups could still let in Norwich City.

Seven Hethersett players featured in Norfolk's fine 2-0 victory over Suffolk at Fakenham that brought Suffolk's unbeaten 18-month run to an end.

Hethersett players featured strongly in both Norfolk goals. After 25 minutes Nicola Bray was brought down after a darting run into the box and Norwich City's Gemma Framan scored from the penalty spot. Norfolk's second after 50 minutes came from Hethersett's Emily Coates who scored from 12 yards. Coates and Bray also went close to scoring on a number of occasions.

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