Goal feast whets appetite for cup semi-finals
2:20pm Tuesday 19th March 2013 in Sport
THIS weekend’s Gill Cup semi-finals could be a goal feast if last Saturday’s results are anything to go by.
Mathern Wanderers and Underwood rattled up double-figure scores to warm-up their shooting boots while their cup opponents both lost.
Blackrock Rovers, who lost 4-3 at Caldicot Town, will need to catch Division 1 leaders Mathern on an ‘off’ day, if they are to book a place in the final.
Wanderers enjoyed a 15-0 home romp against Chepstow Athletic in a match that, believe or not, wasn’t as one-sided as the scoreline would suggest.
Their manager, Gareth Moore, had demanded a 90-minute performance after seeing them ease off in recent matches, rattling up a winnable margin in the first half and then sitting back after the break.
“They gave me the sort of commitment I was looking for,” he said. “It was the sort of performance we will have to put in against the other clubs in the semi-finals if we want to win.”
The match also showed the depth of talent at the club, with Moore able to call on very capable substitutes in vital positions to cover for injured players.
He named Mark Palmer in goal for Jason Johnson (bruised ribs) while Gary Baker was drafted in to replace Sam Marmont who is recovering from a broken arm with Alex Bell taking the captain’s armband.
Mathern’s goals came from Richard Wood (5), Wayne Duffield (4), Ieuan Diyaolu (2), Hywel Pugh, Jeff Whitehouse, Tom Marmont and Gary Baker.
Underwood’s goal total is a little debatable with three different scores reported although the official - league - result gives the final score as 11-0 against Severn Tunnel NP A.
The home side’s manager Danny Williams says it was 13-0 while Tunnel boss Ron Atkins was happy with the league’s total although he thought it was higher.
“We’ll take it at 11-0,” he said. “We lost some of our players through flu and a few went to watch the rugby in Cardiff.
“I offered to call the game off but the boys said ‘No’ so we went with nine players and no recognised keeper - their attitude was inspirational.
“Fair play to Underwood, they are a good side and they punished us.
“But they even offered us a couple of their players to make up the numbers which I thought was a really sporting offer.
“But we can promise them a tougher match in Rogiet on Saturday.”
Underwood boss echoed that hope adding that the mismatch was a good workout for his men.
“The pitch was very heavy so we really had to knock the ball around and it was like a training session.”
Williams chipped in with two goals, while the others came from Sean Johnson 3, Lee Ryder 3, Tom Turner, Elliot Campfield and Rob Williams.
Apart from the cup semi-finals which all kick off at 2pm, the pick of Saturday’s matches is the Division 2 clash between Sudbrook CC and Castle A (KO 2.45pm).