If you have bothered to click on the link below or have already seen the video on Youtube you perhaps don't need to read this report, but hopefully it gives you a better feel for the match from last night when Ely took on Haverhill in what proved to be another match full of goals.
The first 20 minutes were fairly evenly balanced with most of the play being part of a midfield battle. Ely's defence seemed to be able to deal with most of what Haverhill threw at them and Ely seemed to lack a bit of bite with the final threw ball. The two best chances of this period falling to Austen Diaper, who glanced the ball across the goalmouth on 4 minutes and Luke Parkinson who came close with a header on 14.
Ely broke the deadlock on 24 minutes when a brilliant free kick from Adam Dalby on the left was headed in strongly by Adam Murray. This seemed to wake Rovers up a bit and on 31 minutes a bit of a defensive cock up led to the ball finally being headed in and the teams were back on level terms. Ely weren't going to lie down and take it though and Ben Lawrence and his long throws, which had already been a bother to the Haverhill defence, found Austen Diaper in the box and Austen Diaper latched on to the pass to make it 2-1.
Ely continued to be the stronger team for the remaining quarter of an hour of the first half, but the best chance fell to Haverhill when one of their forwards was given the chance of a free header on 39 minutes, but it went just over the bar. Ely definitely need to do something about their vulnerability from aerial attacks and it was to be their undoing again later in the second half.
The second half started off with the Robins in the lead and in the search for more goals. When the half was just 2 minutes old Chadders beat a defender and slotted home in a style we have seen many times before to give Ely a 2 goal cushion and it looked like they might be home and dry, or were they?
As I said the aerial vulnerability was to be Ely's undoing and another free header for Haverhill got them back into the game at 3-2 on 59 minutes.
With half an hour left it looked like Ely had to hang on to what they had or push forward to get another goal. In typical Ely fashion they thankfully decided to gamble on another goal. They had plenty of the play, although for most of the next quarter of an hour the ball was pinging about in midfield and then on 76 minutes Adam Murray was flattened off the ball and Luke Parkinson stepped up to Put the Robins 4-2 up with a strangely straightforward penalty.
It definitely looked like it was game over on 81 minutes when Haverhill had a player sent off for an off the ball incident. It seemed to galvanise Rovers though and on 86 minutes they proved that they also had a long throw specialist when a ball lobbed into the box somehow found its way into Lee Pacey's goal.
Fortunately Rovers ran out of time, even though there were 6 minutes of stoppages. They had a chance to make it 4-4 in time added on, but it could have also finished 5-3 to Ely, but again the score was 4-3, but this time in Ely's favour.