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U14's Win League Cup Final at Broadbridge Heath !!

On Sunday 27 th April 2008 at around 6pm in the evening at Broadbridge Heath Sports Stadium Twin Oaks and East Grinstead Town took to the field to play-out the last of a weekend full of Cup & Plate finals.

On paper and after finishing the season fourth in the U14's B Division, Twin Oaks would start as favourites over their opponents, East Grinstead Town who had finished second from bottom in the U14's C Division. However this was a cup-final and like all finals the form guide does not always determine who wins in these one-off tense and nervous matches.

After a day of changeable weather the rain clouds had finally disappeared when the two sides started the match. For many of the players it was their first time playing in a stadium of this size, this could have been the reason for the nervous early start displayed by both teams. But with their faithful supporters cheering them on it was Twin Oaks that settled the earlier and for the first ten minutes of the game East Grinstead found it hard to get out of their own half. Although retaining the ball and keeping their opposition pinned-in Twin Oaks did not make the best of their early possession and did not really create any scoring chances.

On their first venture into the Twin Oaks half a quick through ball was chased down by Joseph who was arguably East Grinstead 's best player on the day. In a fast race with the Twin Oaks defence he managed to get to the ball first before firing in a shot on the run that Aaron pushed onto the foot of the post. The ball kindly rebounded back into his path and with the Twin Oaks keeper Aaron already committed to the first shot he calmly placed the ball into the empty net. Against the run of play 1-0 to East Grinstead after 12 minutes.

This early set-back seemed to kick-start Twin Oaks into a period of some more attacking based play. After several half-chances from open play the equaliser did not seem that far away. However the goal that drew both sides level can from a corner. Bradley fired in a low corner-kick that was not fully cleared by the defence. The ball was eagerly pounced on by attacker Cameron who prodded the ball into the waiting net. 1-1 after 22 minutes.

With the Twin Oaks defence easily coping with the limited attacking play from East Grinstead and the midfield working hard to retain the ball there were now a number of chances on goal being created by the Twin Oaks forwards. One such chance fell to Bradley who fired in a powerful shot from the edge of the box. The ball looked goal-bound until the East Grinstead Town goalkeeper managed to push the shot around the post.

Other chances in the half fell to Tyler, Ben and Harry before a deep cross from the left side of the pitch from Cameron sailed over everyone in the penalty area and into the net, a desperate attempt by a defender could not stop the ball from crossing the line. 30 minutes played and the score was now 2-1 to Twin Oaks.

The first-half however was not all one-way traffic, but East Grinstead created very little in the way of attacking play. When they did break-through Aaron the Twin Oaks keeper was quick off his line to snub out any chances. Twin Oaks played out the remaining five minutes of the half and went into the break 2-1 up.

The second-half saw both sides start cautiously. East Grinstead Town being a goal down did rally early on, but like the first half they rarely troubled the Twin Oaks goal. Twin Oaks were now beginning to slowly dominate the play and they realised that a third second-half goal would all but kill-off their opponent's efforts. They did not have to wait long as after only ten minutes of the second-half played the all important third goal was scored.

The hard-working midfielder Murat managed to bring the ball under control and powered in a thundering volley from the edge of the area. The ball flew into the net over the despairing hands of the East Grinstead goalkeeper. 45 of the 70 minutes played and the score was now 3-1.

To their credit East Grinstead Town still tried to make a game of it and it took a fine save by Aaron mid-way through the second-half to keep the score at 3-1. It was Twin Oaks however that, although not in top-form, were controlling the game. Another fine shot by Bradley was tipped over the bar by the keeper. There a few other chances from Twin Oaks in the second-half that went begging and late-on Harry nearly added to the three goals that had already been scored.

The Twins Oaks management team of Glenn and Andy used their subs wisely, with Sam working especially hard when introduced and Matthew working well down the right hand side of the pitch in a wide position. The whole of the defence were looking solid with Liam, Howard, Scott and Grant all working and tackling hard.

The defence was being well backed by Aaron in goal. The midfield of Bradley and Murat were all chasing and tackling back to retain the ball, whilst also setting-up the attacking play. These midfield players were being well supported by wide players Harry and Ben. Whilst up-front Cameron's pace proved a handful throughout the whole match.

As the light of the early evening faded and with proud parents, relatives and friends cheering them on, Twin Oaks managed to comfortably play out the remainder of the half and lift the cup by finishing the match worthy 3-1 winners.

Well Done Lad's. Another piece of silverware for the trophy cabinet.

Goalscorers - Cameron 2, Murat

Man of the Match - Cameron