Suffolk and Ipswich league, Senior Division
Achilles 0 Claydon 1 (att 100)
The top tier of the Suffolk and Ipswich League was the only one of the 45 step seven leagues in which I'd not been to any of this season's grounds, so I put that right at reigning champions Achilles.
They're based at the Pauls Sports and Social Club in Ipswich, a logical place to go before heading home to Manchester after a couple of nights away on the Suffolk coast.
It's a decent venue for this level of the game. The single pitch runs lengthways from the modern social club, and on the left hand touchline there are large dugouts, painted in club colours, and a section of railing with advertising boards. The rest of the pitch is roped off.
A free programme was a nice surprise, especially as producing one during the Christmas holidays must be an extra challenge.
The match didn't go as I'd expected, as Achilles' hopes of retaining their title took a knock thanks to mid-table Claydon's first half winner. It came against the run of play, but once they were in front the visitors defended well to keep out the hosts.
The action was entertaining and watched by a large crowd. I wonder if any of them were tempted by the efforts of the Suffolk FA, who deserve credit for taking out a full page advert, in at least one local paper that I saw, advertising festive fixtures at local clubs.