Wingate and Finchley visit Lowestoft on Saturday as both sides look to climb in to the top half of the table. Lowestoft currently occupy 12th spot in the Ryman Premier League, two places and one point above the visitors.
But, after Tuesday’s game against Harrow was postponed, the Blues now have four games in hand on the Trawler Boys and the sides may not be as evenly matched as they appear on paper. Lowestoft and Wingate have enjoyed differing fortunes this November.
Saturday’s home side started the month with a draw before losing twice on the bounce, including a 3-0 loss at home to Canvey Island. This was followed up by victories against relegation candidates Burgess Hill and Grays Athletic before Ady Gallagher’s men were brought crashing back to earth by yet another 3-0 Canvey Island victory.
Constrastingly, Wingate’s only loss in six November games came away to table-topping Bognor Regis. The Blues have hit a real purple patch of form in recent weeks, scoring 13 and conceding five in the four games since that defeat, including a memorable 4-2 victory at Slough Town to reach the first round of the FA Trophy.
One man they have to thank for that is striker Reece Beckles-Richards – the Antiguan international is responsible for 8 of those 13 goals and scored Wingate’s only reply of that 3-1 loss to Bognor.
Those goals alone would make him Lowestoft’s second top scorer, beaten only by Jake Reed’s nine. Reed has found the back of the net three times in November, but his last goal before this month came on the 1st October.
And Lowestoft’s third top goalscorer, Joe Marsden, bought himself out of his contract before joining Leiston this week as Crown Meadow saw a change in personnel. Three Norwich youth players were drafted into the Trawler Boys’ squad while former Peterborough striker, Danny Crow, saw his contract terminated for gross misconduct.
Wingate seem to be enjoying themselves every time they step on to a football pitch. But for Lowestoft, having to face a side on such a hot streak could probably not have come at a worse time. By Andy Gerlis