Ex-Town stars help Whitton lift trophy
THREE former Ipswich Town stars were in the Whitton United side that won the Suffolk Veterans’ Cup for the first time.
Kieron Dyer, who scored his side’s first goal, Titus Bramble and Carlos Edwards all played in their 4-1 victory over holders Woodbridge Town in the final which was one of four to be staged on Super Sunday at Bloomfields, home of Needham Market FC, and attended by more than 400 spectators.
Woodbridge, who were appearing in their fifth consecutive final, had won each of the last two, but right from the off they were up against it versus a strong Whitton United side.
A mixture of good goalkeeping and some profligate finishing meant they kept Whitton at bay until the 65th minute when Dyer bundled home Ronaldo Wright’s right-wing cross.
However, just when it looked as though Whitton would win the cup for the first time – they were runners-up in this competition in 2012 – Adam Glencastle equalised after 84 minutes for the Woodpeckers, who had started to look more threatening as the game wore on.
That was the first of four goals in a frantic seven-minute finale, with Whitton then scoring thtree more unanswered goals.
Gavin Crane put them back in front after 87 minutes, referee Gary High awarding the goal after consulting with his assistant after Ronaldo Wright followed Crane’s deflected effort into the net but did not touch it and therefore was adjudged not to be offside.
Ronaldo Wright, with time and space in the penalty area as tired legs took their toll, then supplied two calm finishes in the space of three minutes either side of the 90-minute mark to wrap up the victory.
Gym United celebrate winning the Suffolk Sunday Cup after their 1-0 victory over Tostock Pirates. Photograph: Ben Pooley
The final was the second to be played on the main pitch, after Gym United had deservedly won the Suffolk Sunday Cup earlier in the day.
They defeated fellow Bury & District Sunday League side Tostock Pirates 1-0 thanks to Mex Melanson’s sweetly struck volley from outside the penalty area over Steve Fenner after 58 minutes.
In a final of few clear-cut chances it was Gym United, the 2014 and 2015 winners, who had the lion’s share of them against Tostock Pirates, who won the trophy in 2016.
Arron Joseph spurned a gilt-edged opportunity to double Gym United’s lead when he lifted his shot over the crossbar from Andrew Wood’s right-wing cross and then Melanson pulled his shot wide from a good position.
With four minutes of normal time remaining, Elliott Barnard pounced on the first mistake Gym United player-manager Matt Morton had made all game, but his lob was acrobatically tipped over by Duncan McNally.
So Gym United, who reached the final of the national FA Sunday Cup last season, held out to claim the cup for the first time in five years.
The other two finals, both played on the 3G pitch, were rather more one-side affairs.
Lavenham celebrate winning the Suffolk Sunday Trophy after their 6-0 victory over Haverhill & Hove Albion. Photograph: Ben Pooley
Scott Sloots helped himself to five goals as Lavenham made up for the disappointment of losing in the final two years ago by beating fellow Sudbury, Haverhill & District Sunday League side Haverhill & Hove Albion 6-0.
Sloots netted a hat-trick in that 2017 final in which Lavenham lost to Haverhill Borough 5-4 after extra time, but he and his team-mates had plenty to celebrate this time as they coasted to victory. The other goal was an own goal.
That was followed on the 3G pitch by the Suffolk Sunday Shield Final which saw Lowestoft-based Fusilier defeat Holbrook Swan of the Ipswich Sunday Football League 5-0.
Harley Thompson led the way with a hat-trick and there were also goals for Sam Lish and Ryan Davies.
However, Fusilier look as though they will have to disband as, after switching from the now defunct Lowestoft & District Sunday League, the Great Yarmouth Sunday League is now folding, and the team now do not have a league to play in next season.
All cups and medals were presented by Richard Neal, Chief Executive of Suffolk FA.
Fusilier celebrate winning the Suffolk Sunday Shield after their 5-0 victory over Holbrook Swan. Photograph: Ben Pooley