Date Published: Monday, May 7th 2012
Highworth Town ..............................6
Matt Bennett 8, Tony Joyce 45+3,
Josh Parsons 71, Matt Horsell 78,
Steve Yeardley 84, Dan Wallington 85
Hellenic Challenge Cup with Bluefin Final - 7th May 2012 - at Newbury FC
After so much cup success that has seen the Moles collect two trophies in April and only lose three of twenty cup matches, this one proved to be a cup final too far.
Highworth Town finished the Hellenic League season in good form and if this team had started the campaign, they would surely have challenged for the league title. They were too good on the day for Binfield and congratulations to them on their cup win.
For the Moles, a chastening day started poorly and simply got worse. Carl Davies started on the bench as his groin injury persists - the close season may see an improvement, or perhaps surgery may be the solution. Whatever the case, when Davies replaced Stuart Tanfield early in the second half, he made a difference and even down to ten men by that stage the Moles enjoiyed their most threatening period.
But the significant action of the match was mostly in the first half hour. The Worthians had already shown signs that they would stretch the Moles to the limit with their pace up front, by the time an 8th minute long ball forward seemed destined to be cleared by Binfield's player of the season, Dan Weait. But as Weait lost his footing at the crucial moment, Matt Bennett found himself with the easiest of opening goals and the Moles were on the back foot.
Five minutes later, another slip, this time by Highworth centrre half Craig Curtis allowed Ian Davies to run into the box. But when his shot was saved by Sharkey at his near post, Johnnie Dyer, who was in for Carl Davies pulled his follow up wide with the goal beckoning.
Worse was to come for Dyer before the half hour, when the scourge of professional football reared it's head at this level and Dyer saw red. With the ball out of play for a throw in, a scuffle between Curtis and Dyer ended with Curtis theatrically falling to the ground clutching his head after the slightest touch from Dyer. No complaints from the Moles about the red card given the rules about raising hands. Odd though that young men who in any other area of life would be embarrassed to appear as weak that a waft of a hand could hurt so much, find it so easy to fall to the ground in apparent agony on a football field. Naturally, Curtis returned to the field grinning widely, within twenty seconds - mission accomplished.
However, the Moles ten battled well for the remainder of the half, with Dan Weait out quickly to smother twice and seeming to head for half time with a glimmer of hope, just a goal behind. But all that was to change, three minutes into injury time. A bouncing ball forward evaded the Moles defence and although Weait saved Tony Joyce's first attempt, it ran kindly for Joyce to tap in to put the Worthians in control.
WIthout holding too much hope, Moles fans hopes were raised for a time, with Carl Davies making a difference and creating problems for the Town defence. James Suarez and Davies both had chances to shoot, but were unable to test Sharkey.
In the end, Town's persistence did pay as the Moles were caught upfield trying to find a way back into the match and after substitute Josh Parsons finished smartly from 12 yards with 20 minutes left to play, three further goals came as the Moles heads dropped.
Goal of the game from Matt Horsell on 81 came when a fine break down the right saw Horsell finish Parsons cross at the far post. Before Dan Weait's penalty save fell kindly for Steve Yeardley to smash home, then a minute later Dan Wallington's speculative shot from range was deflected up and looped over Weait.
A disappointing 62nd and final match for the Moles, but at the end of a gruelling season, this side has won two trophies at the highest level in the club's history - and entertained the brilliant Binfield support along the way!
BINFIELD; Weait, Mortimer, Fenton, Callaway (capt), Shone, Withers (Millar 75), Tanfield (C Davies 50), Suarez, I Davies, Dyer, Wing (Nebbett 68). Subs not used; Hancock, Whitty