Above: The two teams and mascots greet each other.

Whitchurch 2 Brading Town 1

It was a tight game as Whitchurch United took on Brading Town in the Preliminary Round of the FA Cup and most of the time it seemed as if it was going to end as a hard fought goalless draw requiring extra time. But it ended dramatically with the Jam Boys winning 2-1, with a 3-goal frenzy in the dying minutes of the game.

Steady beginning
The match began steadily, and the two teams were locked together with few chances. It looked like a stalemate although the ball scooting across the face of the Whitchurch goalmouth 10 minutes before half time brought sharp intakes of breath as the blue shirts of Brading failed to connect. Despite Ashley Childs’ efforts for the home team harrying away at the Isle of Wight defence the visitors held solid.

The second half saw Brading come out on the offensive and at 10 minutes Whitchurch were lucky to escape being a goal down as the ball looked to ricochet off the left hand post. Much of the match was going the visitors way until the last five minutes, when against run of the game Whitchurch snatched the lead to tumultuous cheering from the attendance of several hundred.

An incredible last few minutes
Brading immediately threw their whole team forward, including their goalkeeper, in a desperate attempt to salvage the game. When the Whitchurch goalie scooped the ball and threw it up the pitch it left Brett Denham with an open Brading goalmouth, allowing him an incredible goal – scoring from the half-way line, and against the pitch’s notorious slope!
The roars were deafening as the ball rolled limply over the line into the empty net!
It seemed as if it was to be a bizarre ending, but it hadn’t finished yet, for with Whitchurch believing they had won 2-0, Brading caught the defence out and snatched a consolation goal. Within seconds the final whistle blew!

Delighted
Delighted manager Jim Macey said he was “Over the moon” with the win, and as the teams headed for the showers they were all congratulated by Whitchurch Mayor and Mayoress Barry and Sandra Jackman who had enjoyed the full match. Several glasses were raised afterwards in the Social Club!

Into the next Round
Whitchurch now move out of the Preliminary Rounds and into the FA Cup’s First Qualifying Round. Once again they are lucky to be drawn at home, with the next game on Saturday 17th September. Opponents will be Lymington or Brockenhurst who drew 1-1 today and have a replay to contend with.

Next game for United
Whitchurch United’s next game is on Tuesday evening, 6th September, when they again play at home and take on Winchester City in the First Round of the Sydenhams (Wessex) League Cup.

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Do you fancy yourself as a Sports Reporter?
The town website would welcome anyone who would like to write match reports or to act as a community sports reporter for the site.

The website is community-owned and it is a voluntary role, but could be very rewarding.
Please contact the website team if interested: contact@whitchurch.org.uk

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