Bosham are the champions!
Bosham are the Southern Combination division-two title winners - while Sidlesham did them a favour by holding Jarvis Brook. Read the reports below - and look out for Easter Monday's action, which sees the sides meet at Walton Lane.
Bosham 2 Roffey 0
SCFL division two
Bosham lifted the Southern Combination division-two title amid joyous scenes at Walton Lane following a hard-fought victory against a stubborn Roffey side.
Roffey did their bit to try to be party-poopers but with title rivals Jarvis Brook only drawing with Sidlesham, the party could really get started.
Bosham had the perfect start in front of a season’s best crowd when Marco Giambelardini edged the Robins in front with a sublime finish following a well-directed through-ball from Bradley Miles.
The home support were delighted and there was hope for more goals as Graeme Dowden and Sam James both looked increasingly dangerous – but chances went begging.
Harry Nourse looked sharp for the visitors and had a couple of shots at goal but Kieran Magee, as usual, was a giant between the sticks.
Nourse forced an excellent save from Magee and at the other end, Sam James was thwarted superbly by keeper Dean Robinson.
Into the second half and the news had filtered through from the Limekiln that Jarvis and Sidlesham were deadlocked so the chances of sealing the title were still achievable.
But Roffey started the brighter, putting the Reds under concerted pressure.
Gavin Fowler and Ben Chowney both had chances to draw the Blues level but determined defence kept Roffey out.
Jake Lafferty was introduced to add a different flavour to Bosham’s attacking options and shortly after the hour, a second goal finally came.
Jack Reeves had just smacked the Bosham bar with header, but Bosham broke quickly and James played the perfect ball into Lafferty’s path and the substitute produced the perfect finish into the top corner to send the home support wild and the players into a celebratory group hug.
Max Kinahan came on replace the impressive James for the last quarter of the game as the Robins saw out time.
It was some time before confirmation came through of a goalless draw at the Limekiln – and Walton Lane erupted into joyous celebration.
It is a tremendous achievement for a village club – their first league silverware since 2010 – and the managers were full of praise for everyone’s efforts, both on and off the pitch, to get the club to this wonderful moment. It’s their third trophy in three seasons.
Sidlesham visit Walton Lane at 11am on Easter Monday, when Bosham will be presented with the silverware.
Bosham: Magee, Cooper, Bulbeck, Docherty, Edgington, Wilson, Bell, Miles, James, Giambelardini, Dowden. Subs: Lafferty, N Redman, Kinahan, H Redman, Hardman.
Jarvis Brook 0 Sidlesham 0
SCFL division two
Sidlesham made the long trip to Crowborough to face Jarvis Brook – and claimed a point that left the title out of reach for their hosts.
Sidlesham were without five banned regulars while Dale Hayes was out ahead of running the Brighton Marathon.
In came 16-year-old Tom Byrne in goal for his senior debut and with two more 16-year-olds in the squad, the squad had a very inexperienced look.
The performance the team put in with the work rate, desire and commitment everyone showed it boads for a very bright future.
Early on Tom Bayley saw a last-gasp block stop his shot from finding the net. Next Dan Bassil’s turn forced a good save from the promising Brook keeper.
Brook caused Byrne to make a smart stop, going full length to keep the scores level. John Phillips and Tom Atkinson were getting on top in the middle and Phillips sent Callum Dowdell away and his cross just missed Bayley and Bassil.
Brook’s impressive forwards had to be watched by Tom Kelly and Matt Roberts in the back line, but Sidlesham held firm.
Sidlesham were dealt another blow on 38 minutes when Tayler Hayes had to be stretched off after a rash challenge from a Brook forward. He was replaced by another 16-year-old Bradley Higgins-Pearce, making his senior debut.
The second half began with Kelly and Roberts in commanding form. Sids had more chances and the Brook keeper made a good save to keep out a Bassil header after he met a inswinging Pearce free-kick.
Dowdell and Callum Litterick were causing problems with neat footwork and delivery and Bayley was denied by last-ditch defending.
This Saturday sees Sidlesham’s last game home game of the season against Montpelier Villa and on Easter Monday they make the short trip to champions Bosham. They play their division-two cup final against Westfield at Shoreham FC on Tuesday, April 25 (7.45pm).
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