Cup final win for Barsham

Cup winners: Barsham after their Bramfield Charity Cup win. Back row, left to right: Nick Holmes, Jo

Cup winners: Barsham after their Bramfield Charity Cup win. Back row, left to right: Nick Holmes, Joe Wicks, Alan Anderson, James Pepperell, Laurie Clarke, Marc Howard, Mark Gascoigne, Lewis Frost and Keith Hudson. Front row: JP Harlow, Matt King, Mark Knobs, Nick Wilson, David Howard, Kieran Bale, David Raynor and Mark Blades. - Credit: Archant

Barsham played Spexhall in the final of the prestigious Bramfield Charity Cup after beating Norton 5-1 in the semi-final the previous week.

It was not an ideal start for Barsham when they lost striker Laurie Clarke through injury after 15 minutes.

The defensive side of Barsham’s game was good with every player covering for each other.

Going forward Barsham were even better. They played the ball around extremely well keeping possession and making it very difficult for Spexhall to get hold of the ball.

Barsham attacked the Spexhall goal time after time and were unfortunate not to open the scoring through Lewis Frost and Nick Wilson who both had excellent shots saved by the busy Spexhall keeper.

Barsham limited Spexhall to only a handful of shots in the first half.

Barsham eventually took the lead from a David Howard long throw with the ball glancing off a defender’s head into the net whilst under pressure from Nick Holmes.

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Birthday boy Kieran Bale was unlucky not to score when he hit a screaming shot that the keeper touched over the bar.

The Spexhall keeper made a string of excellent saves to prevent Barsham extending their lead so it remained 1-0 at half-time.

Barsham manager Mark Blades made some changes at half time with Barsham quickly extending their lead when Frost received the ball just inside the Spexhall half from where he weaved his way towards the Spexhall goal shrugging off challenges before placing his shot wide of the keeper.

Nick Wilson scored the third Barsham goal soon after when he received the ball midway in the Spexhall half and in similar fashion to the second goal ran towards the goal shrugging off several challenges before planting the ball into the bottom corner of the net.

Spexhall scored a late consolation goal and Barsham had a late scare when Spexhall mounted a couple more late attacks. Firstly a free-kick was saved by the Barsham keeper and then a shot was blocked by Marc Howard leaving Barsham winners 3-1.

It was well-deserved victory for Barsham who showed their hunger for victory from the start. Full credit to both sides who made the final an exciting and sporting encounter.

Tomorrow Barsham start the league campaign at home against Factory Arms at 2pm.