CHRISTCHURCH FC 3
PAULSGROVE FC 0
Hampshire FA Russell Cotes Cup – Semi-Final
Tuesday 19 March 2019
Paulsgrove kicked off downhill and had the better of the opening exchanges, until midway through the first half, when Ash Pope’s shot went narrowly wide of the far post. Chris Bishop was badly hurt in a challenge from a Paulsgrove player, who received a yellow card which on another day with another referee could have been a different colour. Fortunately, Chris was able to continue after treatment. Max Wilcock was then injured in another tackle on the edge of the penalty area for which the Paulsgrove offender also received a yellow card. From the resulting free kick, Ash Pope’s shot was saved by the Paulsgrove goalkeeper in the bottom corner. Shortly before the interval, Max Wilcock was again fouled, this time in the area and he recovered to take the penalty himself, but this was well saved by the Paulsgrove ‘keeper with the rebound being cleared off the line to leave the score goal-less at half time.
The second half followed a similar pattern to the first for another half an hour or so, with shots being wide of the goal or safely gathered by the respective goalkeepers. Then, ASH POPE took a free kick from a central position some 25 yards out and shot wide of the Paulsgrove goalkeeper into the far corner of the net to give Christchurch the lead. A couple of minutes later, exchanges between ASH POPE and Dan Haynes led to the former shooting wide of the ‘keeper to increase the lead. Two more fouls by Paulsgrove players led to more yellow cards being issued by the referee, following which a free kick on the right taken by Ash Pope found Max Wilcock who crossed for CALLUM BUTLER to score to make the score an unassailable 3-0 with less than 10 minutes to go.
So, Christchurch progressed into the Russell Cotes Cup Final against Sholing, who had earlier beaten Fleet Town. As is customary in the Russell Cotes Cup, the final is played at one of the competing teams’ home grounds, with Christchurch winning the toss, so that the final will take place at Hurn Bridge on Tuesday 7 May, kick-off 7.45pm. Christchurch – King O, Cherrett, Rogers, Wright, Walker, Bishop (Cooper 66), Swann, Haynes D, Pope, Wilcock (Whitehouse 88), Kirkham (Butler 66). Unused sub – Robinson