Cup holders Chichester are in the mood for another run
RUR Cup holders Chichester began their defence of the trophy with a comfortable 5-0 win against SCFL division-one outfit Oakwood thanks to a Tiago Andrade hat-trick and two goals from Sam Ndlovu.
Chichester boss Miles Rutherford brought in Steve Herbert at full-back and Ndlovu on the wing while Connor Cody moved into midfield to accompany Burgess Hill duel signing Lukas Franzen-Jones.
Oakwood had the game’s first opportunity but Arnold Saurombe blazed over.
Following a foul on Ndlovu, Kieran Hartley picked out Ryan Peake only for the Chi defender to head off target.
Two minutes later Kaleem Haitham and Ndlovu caused the hosts problems with a neat exchange of passes, and it was the same two who linked up for the opener after ten minutes – Ndlovu meeting a Haitham cross at the back post.
Just before the half-hour Andrade created two chances for team-mates – Rob Hutchings skewed the first wide and 60 seconds later Franzen-Jones’ effort was blocked. The City No9 then almost got on the end of a great knock from Hartley.
Cody tried an ambitious shot from long distance before Andrade made it 2-0 five minutes before the interval. Another nice pass from Hartley found Ndlovu on the right and his delivery fell kindly to Hutchings and Andrade was in the right place to slot home after Hutchings’ shot was saved.
Gicu Iordache replaced Hartley at the break and the Romanian was soon in the thick of things down the left.
The hosts’ keeper just got something on a Cody drive as the midfielder and Andrade played a one-two.
On 52 minutes Franzen-Jones fired into the side-netting before chances came and went for Andrade, Cody and Herbert with the Premier Division leaders now firmly on top.
Chi’s fourth followed a terrific piece of skill from Hutchings. Iordache’s shot was parried by Oakwood’s new keeper George Hyde but stabbed in by Andrade from close range for his hat-trick.
Iordache rattled an upright a couple of minutes later before Hyde denied Ndlovu and had his gloves stung by a fierce Andrade strike.
Hutchings, Nodlovu and Iordache were all unlucky with other efforts.
Chi shot-stopper Jordan Matthews, who’d had little to do in the half, pulled off a fine save to protect a fifth clean sheet of the season.
Ndlovu’s second goal provided a book-end for City in time added on when he jinked past a couple of defenders and finished clinically for his third in two games.
Ellis Martin, on for Ben Pashley, struck the crossbar from a set-piece with practically the last kick of the match.
City head to Saltdean in the league this Saturday and with Scott Jones back from his ban this week and Dave Herbert, Lorenzo Dolcetti, Terrell Lewis and Matt Axell available once more Rutherford and assistant manager Graeme Gee will have some decisions to make.
Chichester: Matthews, Hartley (Iordache), Steve Herbert, Cody, Peake, Pashley (Martin), Ndlovu, Franzen-Jones, Andrade, Hutchings, Haitham (Way).