POSTED: November 09 2018 19:34:44. By Keith Long
- Brilliant Beechy Secure Cup Glory
Following a terrific all-round display Beechfield United 1st Team secured a fully deserved 3-1 away win over Walshaw Sports. For this Gilgryst Cup 1st Round tie United had to make three changes and were forced to do some early defending as Walshaw used both flanks to produce a series of counter-attacks. Mike Rogerson and Luke Johnston made vital clearances when under pressure and Beechy keeper Andrew Richardson showed a safe pair of hands on three occasions in the opening ten minutes. Wind assisted long kicks from United's goalie tested the hosts defensive ability in the air and Walshaw's No6 made several ball winning headers. Following a corner Walshaw's No7 got free inside the area and forced a fine reaction save from Andrew Richardson. Twice Jordan Jones-Waite produced surging runs down the right wing as Beechy slowly attacked their opponents with both pace and aggression. This fiercely contested cup-tie continually switched at great speed from end to end and three times in quick succession United's well operated offside trap ruined powerful Walshaw attacks.
Some strong and aggressive tackling plus the whole team displaying a high fitness level were the two main features of Beechy's overall performance. In a congested midfield Chris Ferris, Ethan Birds and Matthew McNally worked like trojans and the latter saw one effort fly over the crossbar after he had raced onto a crossfield pass from Louis Duff. Beechy took the lead in the 13th minute when a free kick taken by Jamie Sinnott deflected off the keeper and during a goalmouth scramble Ethan Birds knocked the ball into the net from almost on the goal line. Straight from the restart Walshaw built a promising attack on the left flank and their No6 sent a pinpoint cross to the hosts No10 who couldn't get the ball under control when left unmarked on the edge of the area. Ethan Birds and Jordan Jones-Waite linked-up superbly in a quick passing move and Louis Duff was just beaten to the ball as he timed his run into the area.
Then in the next minute the Walshaw No9 was allowed to advance unchallenged upfield and United were glad to see his curling drive from twenty yards drift wide of the target. Superb defending from Mike Rogerson and Carl Ravenscroft and a brilliant one-handed save by Andrew Richardson help maintain Beechy's slender lead. Maintaining it's competitive edge this highly entertaining contest kept the referee busy dealing with several off the ball incidents and following another free kick for a foul on Jordan Jones-Waite Beechy went 2-0 up after thirty eight minutes via Tim Taylor. Once again a massive kick by United's keeper caused Walshaw problems and winning an aerial dual Louis Duff glanced the ball onto Jordan Jones-Waite who's first time effort was just wide of the target. The hosts soon found a fluent attacking rhythm in the second half forcing United to absorb some unwanted pressure and superb ball winning tackles from Carl Ravenscroft and Luke Johnston denied Walshaw an nearly chance of reducing the arrears.
Both teams continued to compete fiercely for possession and after Beechy had gone close to increasing their lead Walshaw got a goal back in the 62nd minute. The ball was neatly worked down the left wing and Walshaw's No12 displayed a great piece of skill before sending a curling cross into the area and the hosts No16 headed the ball home from close range. Almost immediately United were back on the attack and after latching onto a wind assisted long kick from the Beechy keeper Jamie Sinnott's curling low drive flashed past the post with the Walshaw keeper left stranded. Jordan Jones-Waite suffered the same fate minutes later as United tightened their grip on the match then Ethan Birds who had a terrific game was replaced by Mike Phythian and he quickly adjusted to the pace of the match. United's substitute combined with Mike Rogerson to set-up Jamie Sinnott and his thunderous drive forced a great save from the Walshaw keeper.
Still a threat via the long ball tactic Walshaw forced some important defending from United who were guaranteed the victory with goal number three on eighty five minutes. Mike Phythian supplied a brilliant defence splitting pass and Man of the Match Jamie Sinnott had the ability to avoid the challenges of two Walshaw defenders and sprint clear before hammering the ball past the keeper. Three minutes later the referee awarded Walshaw a debatable penalty but the hosts No8 hit the crossbar from the resulting spot-kick.