|Blackpool Wren Rovers FC was the venue for this morning's Division 3 Cup final between Division 3A Champions Wrea Green FC and underdogs Ward Heating FC who finished fourth in Division 3B.|
Just one other result from 2A where West Coast Tackle ended their season with a 6-1 win over Marshall Court in the final BFSFA league game of the season. West Coast finish seventh.
Rain in the air and a lot cooler this morning for the Bank Holiday weekend Cup final played at the ground of Blackpool Wren Rovers FC. This morning saw the climax of the Division 3 competition between Wrea Green FC of Division 3A and Ward Heating FC of Division 3B.
It's fair to say that the 3A side wee strong favourites with the bookmakers prior to kick off. Eighteen wins, four draws and no defeats saw the village team win the league by nine points ahead of runners up Mythop Leisure. They also reached the last eight of the Gledhill Cup so losses this season have been very few and far between. After years of mid/lower table mediocrity manager Dennis Halliday has brought in two or three quality players who have settled in smoothly with the long serving core squad. A win today would give them a famous double. I was reading on their website this morning that it's been twenty-five years since a Wrea Green team took BFSFA silverware back to to the rural idyll so maybe today was the day.
In order to reach the final they'd had to beat Dog & Partridge (4-0), Waterloo Hotel (0-4), McKenzies Estates (3-4) and Secure Health FC (1-5).
Opponents Ward Heating may have been underdogs but they've shown a lot of spirit in this Cup run. In the earlier rounds they had to overcome Blackpool Catholic Club (Walk-over), Spindles, Pump & Truncheon Celtic before facing eventual 3B champions Cash & Carry Kitchens FC in the semi-final. After going behind they fought back to eventually go through in a famous 3-2 victory. It's also been a good season in the league where they finished fourth on goal difference just ahead of the Fairhaven. We'll have to wait and see if 4th place is good enough to achieve promotion.
In the Gledhill they fell at the first hurdle to Mythop Leisure FC. They finished the season with a poor run of three defeats but hopefully they could play to their capabilities this morning. Todays' match official was Tony Cunliffe ably assisted by Steve Garrett and Brian Jones.
At 11am we were underway in the stiff westerly wind with Ward Heating defending the School Road end. Good to see Wrea Green bringing out the famous old strip for the occasion.
Wrea Green FC
Tony Cunliffe (Centre) with Steve Garrett (Left) and Brian Jones.
Ward Heating FC
Wrea Green FC supporters.
Ward Heating keeper Lee Bonney.
Just over the bar.
Mr Cunliffe (Left).
The Wrea Green bench. Manager Dennis Halliday (Centre). Seamstress required.
“You call that a shot?, You call that a pass?, You call that a save?”
Wrea Green under pressure.
Ward Heating supremo Mick Hutchinson (Left).
A great save by Wrea Green keeper Hassan. The flag was up for offside but he wasn't to know.
A comedy moment as Marlow is taken out by his own team-mate in the opponents box. Hassan is clearly amused in goals.
No sympathy from the offender. “If the idiot hadn't have got in my way I would have scored!”
“This is my whistle so pay attention to it”.
Half time score : Wrea Green FC 0 – 0 Ward Heating FC.
The first half was very tight with both sides hardly troubling either keeper apart from corners, deep crosses and long throws. Both sides were defensively well organised. Few clear cut chances of note. Ward Heating were well aware of their opponents top class run of results this season but the longer the half went on the more their collective confidence grew.
At half time we saw the annual penalty prize competition as the Divisional winners of the 'Fair Play' award each nominate a player to take five penalties. Whoever wins trousers