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Football’s Longest Day!
A FILM of this year’s Southend Junior League cup finals could well have been sub-titled The Longest Day.
For the six-match extravaganza ran at Southend United’s Roots Hall Ground for more than 11 hours. Play started at 9.30am and was due to finish shortly after 6.30pm. But, with two of the thrilling finals going to extra-time and penalties, it was 8.30pm and near darkness before proceedings came to a halt.
Action got underway with the under-11 final for the Roy Chaplin Memorial Cup. Ekco Whitecaps A beat their counterparts from Benfleet Villa 4-1 with goals from Ben Langton, Joe Mahoney, Scott McEvoy and Sam Eve.
Skipper Daniel Cooksley grabbed Villa’s consolation and Whitecaps’ Ryan Creasey was named man of the match.
Next came the under-12 Malcolm Stockwell Memorial Cup final in which Southend’s Trinity Youth A beat Catholic United A 4-0. Bailey Moss and Mitchell Willis both grabbed braces for the winners, who were pulling off their second successive league and cup double, having already won the Premier title.
Catholic were involved in three of the finals on the day, but their only victory came at under-16 level where their A side beat Rectory Rovers A 4-3 in a penalty shoot-out after the scores had stood at 1-1.
Ross Barrett netted for Rectory and Thomas Kearney nabbed Catholic’s goal with their Kofi Wiredu winning man of the match.
This win added to Catholic’s championship success.
Next, came the Konica Minolta Cup for under-15s. Here Deanswood Youth A beat Southend Manor Youth A 2-0. The same two clubs participated again in the next match, for the Southend Junior League under-14 trophy sponsored by Trinity Youth.
This match produced some of the best football of the day, but this time Manor came out on top. Their B side beat Deaneswood A on penalties 4-2 after the score had stood at 1-1 after extra-time. The Manor line-up also completed a league and cup double.
Final match was the U13 affair for the Arcadian Corporation Limited Cup in which Concord Rangers A beat Catholic United A 5-2.
Man of the match Sammy Knot scored two for Concord with Rikki Jackson, Mason Shave and George Harvey managing single strikes.
Skipper Bradley Seaden and Bradley Batt netted for Catholic. Said league chairman Peter Harris: “It was another very enjoyable, but weary, day.
“By the time the final game finished we could have been playing under candlelight. But there was some great football played throughout and once again we’re indebted to Blues’ chairman Ron Martin for allowing our youngsters the thrill of playing their finals at a top-class venue.”
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