TROWBRIDGE & DISTRICT LEAGUE KNOCKOUT CUP FINAL: Ten-man Westbury lift second trophy

Westbury United Reserves celebrate with the Knockout Cup last night (Photo: Glenn Phillips)

Westbury United Reserves celebrate with the Knockout Cup last night (Photo: Glenn Phillips)

First published in Football
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WESTBURY United Reserves completed a cup double when they came from behind to claim a 2-1 victory over last year's winners Lacock in the Chantry Digital Ltd-sponsored Knockout Cup.

Their 88th minute winning goal from 18-year-old substitute Elliot Hughes delivered a second cup defeat for Lacock at the hands of Westbury, after their 2-0 win in the A&B Cup final last Saturday.

Lacock, who called in Bradford Town’s Craig Gingell and Frome Town’s Ben Thomson for the final, had the best possible start at The Conigre when after only four minutes, a long ball over the top of Westbury's defence let in striker Tom Lye, who coolly opened the scoring in only his third game for the club.

However, Lacock failed to build on their dominant start, allowing Westbury a route back into the game when full-back Mark Coles brought down winger Jonathon Price just inside the penalty area.

From the resulting penalty Westbury's playmaker Gary Tugwell made no mistake, hitting the ball low into the bottom corner of the goal.

Despite being pegged back, Lacock continued to look the better side. Westbury looked nervy in defence and they were lucky not to go behind again after quarter of an hour, when a swift passing move set up Tom Lye, but the striker's rasping shot struck the post.

Lacock midfielder Thomson nearly scored after 25 minutes when he intercepted a misplaced pass from Westbury's Jack Hayward, but his shot just missed the target.

Only two minutes later, a neat pass from Robinson once again put Tom Lye though on goal. However, this time the striker was denied illegally by goalkeeper Leo Whitehead, who came rushing off his line and handled the ball outside the penalty area.

After consulting with his linesman, referee Andrew Ansell was left with no choice but to dismiss Whitehead.

Consequently, Westbury were forced to bring on substitute keeper Jack Sully with the unfortunate Jack Hayward making way.

But being reduced to ten men seemed to galvanise Westbury.

Their early nervy defending evaporated and they started to show the undoubted quality that has served them so well this season. Nonetheless, the best openings were still falling to Lacock.

Their captain Stuart Tutty forced a good save from new keeper Sully, and Westbury captain George Wheeler did well to deny Tom Lye with two great block tackles in the box.

At the other end, lone striker Marc Lanfear nearly ran through on goal when he latched onto a quick throw from Price.

In the second half, both teams seemed to cancel each other out. Lacock found it hard to turn their numerical advantage into goalscoring chances, while Westbury were passing the ball much better than in the first half, but were really struggling to get enough support to lone striker Lanfear, who was often left isolated as the game continued.

As the half developed, Lacock really started to look the most likely to win the game.

With 20 minutes left Westbury were kept in the battle by a great goal-line clearance from full-back Ashley Easton, who somehow managed to divert Craig Gingell's goal bound header wide of the post.

Lacock also forced a series of five consecutive corners in the last ten minutes, but Westbury refused to be beaten.

As extra time looked likely, Westbury scored the winning goal on 88 minutes. Tireless midfielder Gary Tugwell won possession of the ball on the half-way line and played a superb pass to lightning-quick sub Hughes, who showed great composure to score from the edge of the box to make it 2-1.

In the final two minutes, Lacock threw men forward but could not make the breakthrough and Westbury held on claim their cup double over Joe Martin’s side.

Reserves' Ashley Easton won the John Ford Memorial Player of the Final Trophy.

Though naturally disappointed by this defeat, having won Division Two at a canter, Lacock still have the opportunity to complete a trophy double of their own if they win the Spring Cup this coming Friday.

Standing in their way will be Trowbridge Town Reserves who will look to upset the odds when the teams meet at Meadow Lane, which just happens to be the home of Westbury United. The match kicks off at 7.30pm.

TROWBRIDGE & DISTRICT LEAGUE ROUNDUP, STATS AND PICTURES IN THURSDAY'S GAZETTE & HERALD AND FRIDAY'S WILTSHIRE TIMES AND FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @gazsport and @WTSport

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