Thursday, 18 August 2022

Holzer with two assists as Town tame Lions to reach cup semi-final

HENLEY Town Reserves moved into the last four of the Reading Challenge Jubilee Cup with victory away at Benson Lions.

The visitors took the game to Benson right from kick-off, taking the lead after three minutes after neat link-up play between Nico Cheeseman and Nick Holzer.

Cheeseman was released down the wing where he beat two players and played himself into the penalty box with a one-two with Holzer before making no mistake from two yards out. Henley then dominated possession with their midfield trio of Dudley Powell, Michael Millington and Aaron Finch all seeing plenty of the ball, which frustrated the hosts.

The visitors nearly doubled their lead but Finch hit a shot straight at the Benson goalkeeper before Holzer spurned another chance with 10 minutes of the half remaining.

At the break, Henley were forced into making a change after their goalkeeper, Lucas Jinks, pulled a muscle in his right leg when he kicked the ball earlier in the half.

He was replaced by Charlie York, who plays in goal for Henley Sunday side but was on the bench in the hope to get some minutes outfield.

After the restart Benson looked to get back into the game with both sides evenly matched although the hosts were unlucky not to pull a goal back after almost 20 minutes. But then Henley hit back with a chance of their own through Ram Kumar, who broke through the Benson defensive line.

He did well to stay on his feet despite being tripped and managed to get a shot away but it whistled past the post.

It was not until the 70th minute that they scored their second, which came direct from a corner. Holzer swung the ball in from the left and was met by Finch to head home. Rashan Edwards then went close to adding a third but Henley put the game beyond doubt in the 80th minute when Owen Darani latched on to a Daniel York through ball, having outpaced the defence to score a looping 25-yard drive that went up and over the goalkeeper.

The win sets up a possible meeting with near-neighbours Wargrave in the semi-final.

Henley Town Reserves travelled to Nijmegen in Holland this week to play three friendly matches as they have no league or cup fixtures this weekend.

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