BOSS Jonathan Woodgate was pleased to see his half-time switch pay dividends in paving the way for Cherries to seal a 3-1 victory over 10-man Norwich.

Despite the Canaries having full-back Dimitris Giannoulis sent off for a rash challenge on Ben Pearson after 17 minutes at Carrow Road, the hosts led at the interval through Emi Buendia’s classy fifth-minute finish.

But Woodgate made the decision to change things at half-time with a man advantage. He replaced midfielder Jefferson Lerma, who had been cautioned, with striker Sam Surridge.

And academy graduate Surridge converted the leveller from Lloyd Kelly’s deflected cross five minutes after coming on to make it 1-1, before Arnaut Danjuma and Kelly himself got on the scoresheet in Norfolk.

Asked how key the change was to bring on Surridge at half-time, Woodgate told the Daily Echo: “I thought it was important to drop a central midfielder out.

“Jeff, I know he could have got a yellow card, so I didn’t want to keep him on.

“Sometimes when you have Jeff with a yellow card, the referee can level it up just as quick really.

“It was important to bring Sam on, go with two up top and get the full-backs trying to fly past the wingers – really overload it down the sides and move it quick.

“We knew if we tried to play through the middle of them, they would try to catch us on the counter-attack.

“We know they could have been dangers on the counter-attack but after that we controlled it well and kept the ball well.”

Victory put the Dorset side seven points clear of seventh-placed Reading in the Championship table.

Cherries would secure their play-off place if they were to win at Millwall on Wednesday and the Royals were beaten by Luton.

The Dorset club have won their past six league games on the bounce.