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 Saturday, 2 November, 2002, 17:23 GMT
Wimbledon 4-2 Norwich

A David Connolly hat-trick derailed Norwich City's promotion charge and continued Wimbledon's revival at Selhurst Park.

The Dons were rampant in the first half and raced to a 3-0 interval lead through Connolly - who struck twice - and Neil Shipperley.

Norwich stormed back with second-half goals from Ian Henderson and David Nielsen, but a late Connolly penalty secured victory for the home side.

Shipperley volleyed home his 11th goal of the campaign to put the Dons ahead after 23 minutes.

Malky Mackay went close for Norwich from a 28th-minute corner, and then Iwan Roberts flashed a volley just wide.

But Wimbledon doubled their lead four minutes before the interval when Shipperley headed on for Connolly to fire home from just inside the area.

Still worse was to follow for the visitors as Craig Fleming fouled the lively Shipperley in first-half injury time, and Connolly blasted home the resulting free-kick to make it 3-0.

Connolly almost completed his hat-trick by crashing a shot against the woodwork with Norwich goalkeeper Robert Green beaten.

But Norwich got back in the game by sending on young striker Henderson in place of McVeigh just after the hour.

The 17-year-old duly reduced the arrears with his first senior goal within nine minutes, firing home from 20 yards after latching on to Gary Holt's through ball.

The Canaries put themselves within touching distance when Wimbledon old boy Nielsen scored their second from close range with 11 minutes remaining.

But Mackay was adjudged to have impeded Connolly on the break just four minutes later.

And the Dons striker converted the resulting penalty to seal his hat-trick and Wimbledon's win.


Wimbledon: Davis, Hawkins, Holloway, Leigertwood, Gier, McAnuff, Andersen, Darlington, Reo-Coker, Shipperley, Connolly.
Subs: Francis, Agyemang, Heald, Morgan, Gray.

Norwich: Green, Drury, Mackay, Fleming, Nedergaard, Holt, Southall, Heckingbottom, Easton, Roberts, McVeigh.
Subs: Nielsen, Abbey, Llewellyn, Henderson, Crichton.

Referee: F Stretton (Nottinghamshire).

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 BBC Five Live's Richard Flemming
"Wimbledon's steep climb up the table continues"

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