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Reggie Lambe hails AFC Sudbury’s successful promotion push

Reggie Lambe (File photograph)

Reggie Lambe, the AFC Sudbury midfielder, has attributed a “collective belief“ among the main driving forces behind his team’s successful promotion bid this season.

The Suffolk club gained promotion to the Vanarama National League after coming from behind to edge Heybridge Swifts 1-0 in extra time in the Isthmian League North Division Play Off final on Saturday.

Jake Turner converted the winner in the first period of extra time during the evenly-fought encounter at Mel Group Stadium.

“It feels so great to be promoted after coming so close last season but losing in the semis,” Lambe, who was ruled out of the match due to personal reasons, told The Royal Gazette.

“I believe the main key to success was the collective belief that we were good enough to get promotion. Once you have the mindset, you will go above and beyond to achieve it and dig deeper than you thought you could, week in and week out to get the results.

“We had a bit of a rocky patch but managed to pull it together and make it to the play offs.

“It was a special moment to clinch promotion as that was the main goal in joining the club in February. We definitely have the endeavour to go on again next season.

Rick Andrews, the Sudbury manager, was equally as thrilled to see his team promoted to the fifth tier of the English football pyramid next season.

“It’s nice to lift a trophy but for me the winning bit is seeing so many happy faces at the club,” he commented on the club’s Twitter account.

“I think the club has got its Mojo back. I think it lost its way a few years ago but now it’s back where it belongs.

“I think not many clubs would begrudge us going up this season. I think we’ve thoroughly deserved it.”

As for the match, Andrews added: “We decided to step off and not press them to see what they offered, and I thought we handled what threat they had really well.

“Second half I thought we were stepping on a bit better, and I thought their Heybridge legs went a little bit after they were tired.”

Sudbury secured their spot in the playoffs after finishing runners-up in the league championship, seven points adrift of champions Hashtag United.

Lambe played an integral role in helping his team reach the final having netted a spectacular goal before being substituted in the 84th minute in Sudbury’s hard-fought 3-2 win over Grays Athletic in the play-offs semi-final, which was also played at MEL Group Stadium last Tuesday.

The experienced player drilled a shot into the top right corner from 25 yards to bring the teams level in the 34th minute after Sam Bantick had given the visitors the lead in the fourteenth minute.

Lambe, Bermuda’s most capped player, joined Sudbury from league rivals Stowmarket Town in February having agreed to the terms of an undisclosed deal.

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Published May 02, 2023 at 7:09 am (Updated May 02, 2023 at 7:09 am)

Reggie Lambe hails AFC Sudbury’s successful promotion push

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