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Saturday, 4 January, 2003, 16:55 GMT
Ipswich thrash Morecambe
Ipswich players celebrate Jamie Clapham's goal after only two minutes
It was an afternoon of celebrations for Ipswich
Ipswich 4-0 Morecambe

An early goal from Jamie Clapham combined with the dismissal of Jim Bentley after 20 minutes secured Ipswich an FA Cup third-round win over Morecambe.

The non-league team battled courageously for 70 minutes after Bentley was sent from the field for a professional foul on Pablo Counago.

And the lively Danny Carlton almost equalised for Jim Harvey's team after 15 minutes.

But Joe Royle's side always seemed in control with their numerical advantage and substitute Darren Bent extended their lead after 65 minutes.
2 mins: Jamie Clapham puts Ipswich in front
20 mins: Morecambe's Jim Bentley is sent off
65 mins: Darren Bent doubles Ipswich's lead
75 mins: Darren Ambrose lobs Morecambe's goalkeepeer
77 mins: Darren Bent scores again

And Darren Ambrose extended the home team's advantage with a well-taken lob before Darren Bent scored his second.

Morecambe's hopes of pulling off a shock floundered after only two minutes when Clapham put Ipswich in front with a neatly taken half-volley from the edge of the area.

The goal helped Ipswich settle and Joe Royle's team passed the ball with a crispness and accuracy that left the opposition chasing shadows.

I'm relieved not to be on the end of a giantkilling

Joe Royle,
Ipswich boss
Counago should have doubled his team's advantage with a shot straight at goalkeeper Craig Mawson.

But, buoyed by their vocal supporters, Morecambe defended stoutly and might have equalised through Carlton.

The Shrimps striker superbly dribbled his way into the Ipswich area, but his shot was saved by Andy Marshall.

Ipswich's Fabian Wilnis presses Morecambe's Lee Elam
Morecambe's Elam tries to evade Wilnis
And Morecambe's chances of mounting a comeback disappeared when Bentley was dismissed for hauling Counago down with the Ipswich striker bearing down on goal.

The subsequent free-kick was saved by Mawson but Counago went close before half-time, with Iain Swan making a timely block.

From the following corner Herman Hreidarsson headed goalwards and Mawson again came to his team's rescue.

Darren Ambrose also went close for the home team before the break as snow started falling over Portman Road.

Mawson was in action early in the second period, superbly denying Counago, as the home team pressed for a decisive second goal.

The game was over when we had James Bentley sent off - it was very harsh

Jim Harvey,
Morecambe boss
But Darren Bent eventually translated the home team's dominance into goals when he latched onto a through ball before sliding the ball into the corner of the Morecambe net.

And with the visitors resistance broken, Ambrose lobbed Mawson before Bent notched his second of the match with a tap-in from two yards.

Ipswich: Marshall, Naylor (Darren Bent 53), Holland, Hreidarsson, Wilnis, Wright, Ambrose, Clapham (Abidallah 79), Richards, Counago (Reuser 77), Marcus Bent.
Subs Not Used: Pullen, Armstrong.

Morecambe: Mawson, Thompson (Murphy 22), McKearney, Bentley, Swan, Colkin (Ubershar 23), Rigoglioso (Talbot 68), Drummond, Stringfellow, Elam, Carlton.
Subs Not Used: Black, Curtis.

Sent Off: Bentley (20).

Booked: McKearney, Carlton.

Att: 18,529

Referee: G Hegley (Hertfordshire).

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