St Joseph’s bounced back from their Challenge Cup final defeat with a 3-2 victory over Langold Old Boys to win the Benevolent cup.
The game began like a traditional cup final, both sides reluctant to concede first, cancelling each other out with few chances created.
In the 20th minute Matthew Thompspon, arguably the St Joseph’s Player of the Season, crossed from the left and found target man Phil Richardson who finished from close range to put St Joseph’s in front.
This seemed to raise the young team from Langold and St Joes had keeper Mick Hancock to thank, pulling off close range saves from Brad Craven and Tom Burridge.
However with 10 minutes off the half remaining, following some neat interplay, left-back Leigh Wells equalised with a fantastic well placed effort from 20 yards.
With half time looming St Joes skipper and stand in keeper from the previous week Chris Rawson finished from 10 yards to send St Joes in 2-1 up at the break, a scoreline which was a little harsh on Langold.
The second half began as the fist did with little in the way of chances until the hour mark when veteran Tom Richardson was slow out of the Joseph’s defence and kept Ryan Goulding onside.
Goulding was bearing down on goal when keeper Hancock had a rush of blood and came charging out of his area and clumsily bought down Goulding.
This resulted in the keeper seeing red and left Langold with a free kick 20 yards from goal.
Tom Richardson took the gloves and became keeper, his first job picking the ball out of the net as David Heaver equalised from the resulting free kick.
With half an hour remaining Langold failed to make the extra man count and didn’t test Richardson at all.
In the 80th minute St Joseph’s were awarded a penalty when Phil Richardson was fouled by James Fisher.
Thompson calmly stepped up to cap a great season by scoring the penalty and winning the cup for St Joseph’s.
James Fisher was sent off in stoppage time for a needless foul and will now face a ban, and as the final whistle was blown St Joseph’s manager Andrew Guest celebrated a deserved victory with his players.
Dean Bonser of St Joseph’s was named the Alan Thackery Memorial Man of the Match and was presented the award by Alan’s brother Stuart and his sister Maria.
St Joseph’s captain Chris Rawson was presented with the cup by the League’s fixtures and referees secretary Dave Northage.