Cambs Kershaw Premier Division
Great Shelford 6 Chatteris Town 0
With a host of first-team regulars missing alongside a tepid run of form, it is the worst combination Town could have hoped for.
It was a tough prospect to get a result at Woollards Lane against an opposition who hadn’t lost since August, but also had more quality in the final third.
This is in contrast to a downward trend that’s seen the Lilies slip into the bottom-four, somewhere they wouldn’t have imagined to be last season, pre-season aims of promotion potentially now another world away.
Manager Lea Jordan was proud of his players’ display when down to the bare bones, but they couldn’t prevent their hosts breaking the deadlock just two minutes in following a right-sided cross that cannoned off the unfortunate Scott Taylor.
Town pushed forward whenever they could as Aidan Hollis was nearly the beneficiary of an Ash Blanchflower left-wing cross, who impressed at times with his neat footwork, but they were mainly forced to absorb relentless Shelford pressure.
Two goals in quick succession wiped out any hopes of a Town revival via Jake Wayne and Nick Impey strikes, and after a needless Dean Saunders foul, up stepped Michael Lambert to confidently dispatch past Ryan Rayner from 12 yards.
Fantastic five became six of the best for Shelford after the break, Josh Townshend slotting through Rayner’s legs after a sloppy defensive error, before Impey notched his brace with an intricate finish into the bottom-left from a tight angle.
It could have been worse if it wasn’t for a brilliant goal-saving tackle from Chris Matthews and the goalkeeping exploits of Rayner, despite showing some signs of life at the other end.
A tough mountain to climb for Town, with next week’s clash at Sawston now holding huge importance.
Lilies: Ryan Rayner, Scott Taylor, Chris Matthews, Dean Saunders, Jacob Butler, Liam Birch, Aidan Hollis ©, Brandon Ransome, Ash Blanchflower, Will Grant, Gary Smith.
Unused sub: Salisbury.
Goals: Great Shelford – Taylor OG (2’), Wayne (32’), Impey (33’ and 79’), Lambert (45’ en), Townshend (52’).
Cautions: Chatteris Town – Saunders (foul).
Referee: Jake Webster.