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Last season the highest placed team Melford's first team defeated was Swaffham Town who finished in 9th, and the majority of matches against the top sides were, in all honesty, damage limitation trying to keep the scoreline respectable.

This season it's been a different story and the last 7 results against the promotion-chasing teams really show how much Melford are improving this term:

-Won 1-0 v Halstead Town

-Lost 1-2 v Ipswich Wanderers (losing to a late goal)

-Lost 0-2 v Swaffham Town (losing to two late goals)

-Won 4-1 v Saffron Walden

-Lost 1-2 v Haverhill Borough (losing to a last minute goal)

-Lost 0-2 to Fakenham Town (in the contest until the 2nd goal in 75th minute)

-Drew 1-1 v Great Yarmouth (again conceding a last minute goal)

Naturally you can look at the late goals conceded in those matches and be disappointed not to have picked up another 5 points or so. But the massive positive is that all 7 of those sides are good teams in the promotion hunt, and they've all either dropped points against Melford or been made to work very hard to beat Melford.

That's a big step forward and to compete with the top sides over a 7-match period shows it's not a fluke. Manager Jules Mumford must be delighted with the progress made in under a year, bearing in mind we were regularly losing by cricket scores before he took over.

The Reserves and Under 18s have endured a frustrating time recently due to the weather and still haven't played in 2014 yet. Hopefully they will finally get a game, weather permitting, this week when the Under 18s host Witham Town on Wednesday, followed by the Reserves at home to Hadleigh United on Saturday.

The Ladies had a great start to 2014, winning 6-2 at Brantham Athletic in the cup on Sunday. Their reward for that victory is a trip to Brandon in the next round. The Ladies are without a fixture this weekend.

Meanwhile you can keep up to date with all the Colts results and fixtures on their website....www.longmelfordcolts.co.uk

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