Nyetimber Pirates ended the West Sussex League premier-division season with their first league defeat in 27 games – losing 3-1 to TD Shipley – but at least got their hands on the title on the same day.
The newly-crowned premier-division champions were treated to a guard of honour from Shipley after clinching the title last week against Lavant.
The Looters were desperate to finish the season undefeated but it wasn’t to be for Ted Griffin’s boys.
A strong Shipley side found themselves 1-0 up just after the break but Nathan Stonelake put the away side back on track midway through the second half with a decent finish.
Shipley hit back straight away and put themselves 2-1 up from the spot before Danny Towers and Phil Turner both received red cards for separate incidents.
Keeper Warren Pye saved a Shipley spot-kick as Nyetimber looked to get back in the game, but as the nine-men Looters stretched the game Shipley hit them on the break giving them a famous win against the champions.
After the game WSFL committee member Don Barber presented the trophy to Pirates captain Michael Frangou and chairman Charlie Welling.
Despite the loss the Pirates celebrated in fine form on the pitch and even sang the song “We’re not invicible” after losing their only game of the season as they celebrated with the 81-year-old trophy
Pirates join a select few local clubs who have won the WSFL in the past with only a handful of teams from Bognor ever getting their hands on it, including Bognor, Pagham, South Bersted and Newtown Villa.
Despite the defeat it’s been a great season for the boys from Pirate Park with the premier-division glory adding to the reserves’ Bareham Trophy and division-three south double.
Pirates: Pye, Linkhorn, Pasterfield, Towers, Hamm, Chester, Urquhart, Haga Hammond, Frangou, Turner, Westbrook. Subs: Williamson, Stonelake, Angell, Cox.
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