Sunday, 21 October 2018

10-man Watlington hold on to reach cup quarter-finals

10-man Watlington hold on to reach cup quarter-finals

NORTH Berks League side WATLINGTON TOWN progressed to the last eight of the Oxfordshire Intermediate Cup following a penalty shoot-out win at Thames Valley Premier League’s ROTHERFIELD UNITED last Saturday.

The visitors put in a good display of resilience and determination and reaped reward for a dogged effort in taking the game all the way to penalties by converting three of their four spot kicks at Bishopswood following a 4-4 draw after extra time.

Town made a positive start to the game on a soggy pitch, but soon conceded the initiative as Rotherfield pressed and forced home the first goal of the game. Things got worse for the visitors when centre-back Jon Little was forced off with a knee injury.

The conditions were difficult but Watlington started to fashion opportunities in the second half, and from an Adam Holloway cross with an hour played, William Wright drew Town level with a far-post header.

The visitors then took the lead when Holloway collected a pass from his brother Owen, and rifled in a screamer from outside the box.

Watlington wasted their advantage as Rotherfield soon pegged them back to 2-2 minutes later. It was not long before the hosts found themselves 3-2 up and seemingly heading into the quarter-finals, only for Holloway to strike again, this time from captain Kurt MacCormick’s pass.

With the scores level at 3-3, there was further drama when Owen Holloway was sent off following his second caution of the game, and a depleted Town found themselves hanging on for extra time and the chance to regroup.

In extra time Rotherfield once again took the initiative, as a high cross beat the visitors’ defence and was swept in past goalkeeper Chuck Selwood. Watlington were not to be denied and equalised to make it incredible 4-4 when Adam Holloway’s pass was swept in by MacCormick at the far post.

Town held on for the draw, and in the shoot-out Selwood saved one Rotherfield penalty, with two others failing to find the target, while Watlington converted three of their four spot kicks to complete a dramatic cup victory.

Elsewhere WOODCOTE/STOKE ROW RESERVES crashed out of the competition after losing 6-0 at CLANFIELD (85) DEVELOPMENT.

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