Sport

Depleted Heath overcome League Champions

Heath manager Steve Painter

Tuesday December 1 – SCFA RUR Charity Cup Round 4

Littlehampton Town  0 – 2 Broadbridge Heath

Football

Andrew Crisp – Football Reporter

Midweek away games have become a real burden for Heath Manager Steve Painter this season and this was no exception.

With eight of his regular first team players unavailable for the game, it was always going to be difficult. To come away with victory against the current League Champions was a fantastic achievement by his players who were applauded off the field by the travelling Heath supporters after the game.

As you would expect from a team who have won nine of their last ten matches, the home-side created a number of openings in the first period but for once the finishing of their prolific strikers George Gaskin and George Landais was lacking, with both wasting good opportunities by blasting them high or wide of goal and a couple that were on target went straight into the arms of Heath keeper Michael Chester.

Heath may not have had the same number of chances as their hosts but when they did the home-side were grateful for the alertness of their own keeper Jon Hendrick who saved a header from Jake Legrange, came off his line quickly to smother a shot from Kieron Purkis and then denied Legrange again when the striker thought he was through. However, the keeper was helpless in first half injury time when Legrange rifled a shot at goal from 25 yards that crashed against the underside of the crossbar and out to safety.

The combination of Gaskin and Landais were again in action at the start of the 2nd period with the latter’s effort comfortably saved by Chester but the game changed midway through the half when a long Heath free-kick was played into the penalty area where Jake Holmes was wrestled to the ground by a defender and the referee had an easy decision to award Heath a penalty kick and a second booking for the defender immediately followed by a red card meant his team were reduced to 10 men.  Ollie Moore coolly slotted from the spot to give The Bears the lead.

Heath never looked in danger with the extra man and almost added a second when Stuart Chester burst into the penalty area but again Hendrick was out like lightning to block the shot. With five minutes remaining, Legrange broke away down the left flank and picked out Moore arriving late on the edge of the box and the Heath midfield player hammered a right foot shot past Hendrick to complete an unexpected 2-0 win to take Broadbridge Heath to their 3rd RUR Cup semi-final in 4 years.

Team: M.Chester, Robinson (Ozga 55), Wicking, Attwater, Flack, Chester, Moore Wragg (Clark 88), Purkis (D Robinson),  Holmes, Legrange.

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