JAMMY LLOYD led by example for Newark Flowserve against Gedling after being given the captain's armband.
AT THE business end of the season, it is points that matter rather than performance. And, with that in mind, Newark Flowserve beat Gedling Miners’ Welfare 3-1. So job done.
The game itself would have been a better watch on teletext, but the final league game of the season attracted an excellent crowd of 234 in the sunshine, without ever reaching the heady heights of a 7-1 Flowserve win in a monsoon at Gedling in December.
East Midlands Counties League title rivals Selston finish their campaign with four successive home league games after Tuesday’s trip to Teversal, while Flowserve must play their last five league games away from home. Answers on a postcard, please.
Injury and suspension forced Flowserve to ring the changes against Gedling, with Sol Miller moving into central defence alongside Rhys Lewis, and Jahred Russell uncomfortably stepping into the right-back role, while midweek signing Nathan Kelly got a place on the bench after his deadline arrival from cup final opponents Clifton All Whites.
With skipper Tom Potts serving the first game of his suspension, the armband went to Jammy Lloyd. There may be only one “Jammy Dodger”, according to the FEC, but he is worth his weight in gold.
Lloyd inspired his troops forward with word as well as deed, but Flowserve took until the 34th minute before Sean Woolley had the ball in the net following a Blair Anderson corner, only for the whistle to have already gone following an infringement in the box.
It was the visitors who took the lead four minutes before the break when a clumsy tackle by Lewis conceded a penalty and Jack Jepson converted from the spot.
Flowserve were back on level terms when good work by Tyrell Shannon-Lewis saw him evade a number of tackles before crossing from the right, and Woolley gleefully lashed home his third goal in six games for the club.
Another error by Lewis presented a moment of danger, but left-back Will Rawdon timed his tackle in the box to perfection and those with orange blood coursing through their veins breathed again.
Jimmy Spiers of Gedling was once again the villain of the piece as he was shown only yellow for stopping Woolley in his tracks on 67 minutes, but the latter picked himself up and clipped in the resultant free-kick for Lloyd to race in at the far post and bury a header for his ninth of the campaign to give the hosts the lead for the first time.
An outstanding save from Nathan Burrows kept out the visitors in the last minute of the 90, as he dived to his right to keep out a fierce shot, but the game was made safe five minutes into stoppage time when Shannon-Lewis was hauled down for a penalty.
He dusted himself down, fired home number 23 of the season, and the referee brought a close to the proceedings.
Gedling’s coaching staff offered the match officials some harsh words of advice as they departed, but I thought that the boys in black were one of the better trio to officiate at Lowfields this season.
But my team won. And, at the end of the day, that was good enough.
Newark Flowserve: 1 Nathan Burrows; 2 Jahred Russell; 3 Will Rawdon; 4 Sol Miller; 5 Rhys Lewis; 6 Jammy Lloyd (captain) (Ryley Thompson 83mins); 7 Sean Woolley; 8 Jack Beckett; 9 Elliot King; 10 Tyrell Shannon-Lewis; 11 Blair Anderson (Nathan Kelly 70mins).