Hollington United reach county cup final for first time

Sean Ray was Hollington United's man of the match in the 2-0 win away to Sporting Lindfield
Sean Ray was Hollington United's man of the match in the 2-0 win away to Sporting Lindfield

Hollington United’s footballers created a slice of club history by marching into their first ever Sussex Intermediate Challenge Cup final.

Second half goals from Alan Foster and Jan Bailey secured a 2-0 win in a very tough semi-final encounter away to Mid Sussex League Premier Division rivals Sporting Lindfield yesterday (Saturday).

The game started, as expected, with both teams reluctant to take any risks and sizing each other up. It was Sporting, though, who nearly drew first blood with a speculative shot from 20 yards which was brilliantly saved by Elliott Stokes in the Hollington goal.

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This seemed to wake the Lions up and it was they who took control of the first half by dictating the play. Jay Tomlin came closest as he sent a rasping shot over the crossbar from a tight angle.

The second half started better for Hollington, with Kian Moynes hitting the side-netting from 30 yards out.

The breakthrough came on 55 minutes. Dominic Clarke found Foster with an inch-perfect cross from the left and Foster smashed home to give Hollington the lead.

It was 2-0 no more than five minutes later. More good work down the left saw Moynes find Bailey, who stooped to head home his seventh of the season.

The Lions had chances to increase their lead, but it was Sporting who missed the best opportunity when they volleyed wide of Stokes’ goal late on.

Hollington then saw the game out comfortably to set up a final showdown against Upper Beeding, who stunned unbeaten Southern Combination League Division Two title favourites Rustington in the other last four tie.

Man of the match, sponsored by Joe Hustwayte Plastering, was Sean Ray.