Holders reach cup showdown
FOOTBALL round-up Biggleswade United are on course to retain the Beds Senior Cup. A 3-2 semi-final win after extra time over last season s runners-up Leighton Town on Tuesday night ensured the holders reached a second successive final. They will meet Duns
Biggleswade United are on course to retain the Beds Senior Cup.
A 3-2 semi-final win after extra time over last season's runners-up Leighton Town on Tuesday night ensured the holders reached a second successive final. They will meet Dunstable Town in the final on Tuesday, May 8, at Arlesey Town's ground.
An end-to-end frenetic 120 minutes saw United come back twice to take the tie with a 100th minute winner from favourite Robbie O'Dell.
United were trying to replace injured striker Keith Thomas when Leighton took the lead.
A long drop kick from Nigel Maarman caught United square and Bilal Hassan took full advantage outpacing Simon Catmur and Danny Bennett to fire past Adam Lawrence.
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But with almost his first touch of the ball, sub Wayne Goldsmith levelled for United. A superb free-kick from Nick Stillwell found Goldsmith at the far post and the striker headed past Maarman to take the sides in all square at the break.
Leighton pressed on the restart and in the 63rd minute, a packed six-yard area saw James McNulty snap up a loose ball to notch from close range.
As hopes of a third senior cup final in six years began to fade, up popped youngster Rhys Cannella to draw the sides level again. And it was another stunning free-kick from Stillwell that found Cannella who rose above the defenders to glance a header past Maarman.
In the final minute of normal time, Michael Scarisbrick saved United's chances with a goal-line clearance.
In the 100th minute, a long pass from Jack Weeden found O'Dell wide on the right and leaving his markers behind, O'Dell broke into the Leighton penalty area and fired low past Maarman.
The second period of extra time saw Leighton fire everything at United but an outstanding team performance saw the Second Meadow side hold out.
United were 4-0 winners at home to Royston on Saturday thanks to a brace from David Daniels, Weeden and Goldsmith.
Biggleswade Town earned a fine point with a 1-1 draw at league leaders Edgware on Tuesday night.
This followed Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Tring Athletic.
Potton United failed to break down hosts Yaxley in a goal-less draw on Tuesday night.
The Royals had followed up their midweek cup win over Northampton Spencer with a 4-0 league victory on Saturday. The first half was a fairly even affair with both sides having the chance to take the lead but the score remained 0-0 at the break.
Potton showed their excellence from set pieces with three of the second-half goals coming from corners.
Gareth Cottenden scored the first two, his first from close range and the second a spectacular strike from the edge of the box.
Brett Donnelly scored the third and his strike was deflected into the net by Steve Kuhne for the fourth.