Melbourn storm to successful cup defence

Melbourn v Lakenheath Casuals Reg Haigh and Arthur Peck Cup final

Melbourn v Lakenheath Casuals Reg Haigh and Arthur Peck Cup final - Credit: Archant

MELBOURN continued their season of success as they defended the Reg Haigh and Arthur Peck Cup with a 4-0 win against Lakenheath Casuals.

Ben Wright bangs in a goal for Melbourn

Ben Wright bangs in a goal for Melbourn - Credit: Archant

Ben Wright put Melbourn ahead in the first minute as he got on the end of an Andrew Gray long throw and flicked a fine backward header over the keeper and in.

It was an electric start from Melbourn and immediately set the tempo for the game.

The game was firmly in Melbourn’s favour with Casuals clearly rattled and reduced to lumping long balls which were comfortably dealt with.

As the half continued, Lakenheath started to get a foothold but often found the Melbourn defence in imperious form, with Andrew Gray in particular having a fine game.

In the latter stages of the half Melbourn began to up the tempo and shortly before half-time had their second.

Another Gray long throw caused problems in the Lakenheath box and as the cleared only to the edge of the box they found Russell Cooper on hand to slam a fantastic volley into the top right corner. It was a truly magnificent strike befitting of the occasion from a player who has had a fantastic season.

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The second half saw more of the same with the Casuals unable to cope with Melbourn as Melbourn endeavoured to get the ball down and play despite the poor playing surface.

Melbourn had their third midway through the half and the source again was a Gray long throw. This time the throw was flicked backwards by the defender but it only found Ian Burt arriving late who planted a volleyed finish home to effectively end the game.

Lakenheath continued fighting to the end but really didn’t have any real threat and Melbourn completed the scoreline in the closing minutes with the move of the match.

Stuart Smith combined with Josh Cantle out wide who in turn played inside to Ben Fox in space.

Fox took a touch before sending a defence splitting pass through the centre of the Lakenheath back line to Cooper.

The ball didn’t fall kindly for Cooper however but as it bounced high he saw the over-lapping Wright and headed into his path in the area.

The ball bounced high in front of Wright but he only needed one touch volleying home on the bounce with an unstoppable strike and a fine goal to cap an excellent Melbourn performance.

The result capped a fine Melbourn season that has seen them get promoted and retain the cup they won the season before.

Melbourn: White; Ridden, Gray, Sell, Smith; Wright, Wagstaff, Fox, Burt; R Cooper, Lees; Subs all used: A Cooper, Cantle, Walker, Bland.