Rhoose 5 Sully Sports 5 - (Rhoose win 4-3 pens)
1:20pm Thursday 21st March 2013 in Sport
RHOOSE 5 SULLY SPORTS 5 (after extra time; Rhoose win 4-3 on penalties)
THIS South Wales Senior Cup semi-final brought together two local sides who are top of their respective soccer leagues.
The ‘derby’ game, which was switched from its intended venue at Beddau and was hit by a torrential mid-match hailstorm, started quietly, but it was South Wales Amateur League side Rhoose who struck the first blow as a mistake led to ex- Sports star Calvin McClaggon finishing well from 20 yards.
With Rhoose relying more on long balls and quick breaks, South Wales Senior League side Sports put some neat moves together and, creating the better chances, grabbed a deserved equaliser when Lee Piotrowski picked up the ball on the edge of the area and his low drive was deflected past Davie in the Rhoose goal. With Rhoose struggling to clear their lines, a long ball saw the ‘keeper hammer the ball against his own player and it then flew back into an empty net to edge Sports ahead.
The second half saw the players fighting through the torrential hailstorm and Rhoose levelled but Sports went ahead again when Gareth Hemmens fired home after Rhoose failed to clear. Within minutes, Alex Long finished well to put Sports two goals clear.
Rhoose replied with a good free kick and then levelled but Sports regained the advantage when Hemmens glanced in a header with the ‘keeper clutching thin air. A quick break from Sully’s Nathan Blackie saw him obstructed as he went past the last Rhoose defender, who was very lucky to receive just a yellow card.
With the game going into injury time, a final attack saw Rhoose with a man spare and, although looking offside, he hammered the ball high into the net for the leveller.
In extra time Sports continued to attack and twice brought saves from the Rhoose ‘keeper. With a couple of Sports’ players carrying injuries, they were flat out and, although both teams made the expected substitutions, there were no more goals in open play.
In the dreaded penalty shoot-out, Sports’ Garon Davies blasted his shot way over the bar but Sports ‘keeper Kieron Sharratt saved the first Rhoose penalty. Long put Sports ahead but, from the next Sports penalty, Piotrowski hit the bar. Rhoose nailed the rest of their penalties and, to jubilant scenes, raced over to embrace their ‘keeper.
Sports had given their all and were left to rue a number of missed chances.
The game was a credit to all players and the officials who handled the game well in very cold and wet conditions.
Sully wish Rhoose the best for the final on Friday, May 10, when they face STM Sports.
Sully return to league action when they face a very difficult visit to the San Siro Stadium Butetown on Saturday; meet at Lidl at noon.
The second team’s game with the Imps at Swanbridge was curtailed with Sports well ahead. The Imps suffered so many injuries they they could not field the required number of players to complete the game. This Saturday Sports’ First Division team travel to Cogan for a league game.