Supersub Ham helps Cheddar topple league leaders
PUBLISHED: 15:27 29 November 2017 | UPDATED: 15:27 29 November 2017
Two goals from substitute Callum Ham, saw Cheddar defeat league leaders Westbury United and bring home all three points.
Westbury Utd 0
Cheddar’s Callum Ham was the talk of the Westbury’s Meadow Lane ground as his superb second half brace brought back full points for the Cheesemen.
Ham, who had left the club in close season to seek his fortune with Bridgwater Town and latterly Oldland Abbotonians, only returned to the Bowdens Park some 24 hours prior to the game.
The first half saw the home side force the pace, but to the credit of both teams, neither side forced any real chances of note, despite United forcing six first half corners and several free-kicks.
The home side thought they had taken the lead on 21 minutes as Jordan Pinder headed home from a corner kick, but there was an infringement on goalkeeper Liam Kingston and the effort was disallowed.
The visitors themselves were unlucky not to take the lead on 40 minutes, as Craig’s Mawford’s 25-yard free kick was acrobatically tipped over the cross bar by Lewis Porter in the Westbury goal.
Following a first 45-minute spell noticeably dominated by both defences, the game opened out to a degree in the second half and Cheddar began to force the pace.
On the hour mark came a controversial incident with Cheddar’s front man Adam Jones at the centre of the action when he was pulled back by the Westbury centre-back, who only received a caution for his efforts, despite appearing to be the last man.
Cheddar manager Shaun Potter introduced substitutes on the hour mark, with new signings Shaun Lambert and Callum Ham being introduced and there is little doubt these tactical switches changed the course of the game.
Within five minutes of the introduction of Ham, the visitors were in the lead when he dashed into the penalty box to finish off a Chris Coombs cross from eight yards.
Six minutes later, despite being closely monitored by two Westbury players, Ham created space for himself and volleyed home from 40 yards for an excellent goal.
The league leaders finished the game strongly, but keeper Kingston coped well with all of Westbury’s efforts and was well protected by centre backs Danny Griffiths and Nathan Best.
Cheddar manager Shaun Potter said: “I could not be happier with the way the lads performed. We were outstanding and never looked like losing the game and I thought we controlled the game from the first whistle.
“I’m excited about the group we have at the moment and I’m looking forward to see what we can do this season, we’ve got a tough December, but we are all focussed on the challenge and are ready for it.”
Additionally, the Cheesemen’s performance at Westbury achieved the team of the day accolade from regional newspaper The Sunday Independent.
Cheddar have now recorded 10 straight wins and host old-adversaries Oldland Abbotonians on Saturday, in what is sure to be a further test of character for the fourth-placed Cheesemen.