Pirates seize top spot ... Unicorn win a nine-goal cup thriller

Nyetimber Pirates and Unicorn were among winners in the latest round of West Sussex League and associated cup games.

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Action between Unicorn and Rowfant / Picture by Derek MartinAction between Unicorn and Rowfant / Picture by Derek Martin
Action between Unicorn and Rowfant / Picture by Derek Martin

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Nyetimber Pirates 3 Petworth 2

WSFL premier division

The Pirates went top as they continued their unbeaten start to the season.

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In a scrappy game, the Pirates dominated the early exchanges.

The deadlock was broken on 25 minutes. Scott Towers cut inside but was brought down on the edge of the box. Andy Cox delivered the free-kick, the ball evading both the Petworth defenders and the onrushing Pirate attackers to nestle in the far corner.

The lead was doubled a few minutes later when a long Michael Hamm pass split the Petworth defence for Cox to run through and cut the ball back to Michael Frangou, who slotted home with a well-taken finish.

Petworth started to come back into it and it wasn’t long before the deficit was halved. A long throw was flicked on into the six-yard box and the Petworth attacker’s shot crashed in off the post.

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Two minutes into the second half, the teams were level. A slip at the back allowed a Petworth forward to run through on goal and calmly finish.

The winning goal came on 60 minutes when an error in the Petworth defence was chased down by Cox who capped a man-of-the-match performance by rounding the keeper and squaring the ball to Phil Turner, who poked the ball into the net, taking his impressive goal tally for the season to 12.

Things went from bad to worse for Petworth when a petulant kick left the referee with no option but to brandish a red card to one of their team.

The Pirates now sit in top spot with six wins from six and turn their attention to this week’s tough Intermediate Cup fixture with SCFL division-two side Worthing Leisure.

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* Lavant had a home walkover in the Malcolm Simmonds Cup when opponents Worthing Borough were unable to play their tie.

Unicorn 5 Rowfant 4

Sussex Junior Cup

Unicorn welcomed free-scoring undefeated Rowfant to Avisford Park in the Sussex Junior Cup – and won 5-4 for the second week in a row.

The Unicorn were 1-0 down early on to an Alex Brinkhurst goal. The Unicorn drew level when a cross-shot by Matt Parker was deflected in.

Cameron Marsh was brought on after the break and made an instant impact. He picked up a perfect through-ball from Jak Goddard and slotted home.

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Unicorn won a penalty courtesy of Mark Thompson who stepped up to convert. Rowfant quickly responded though with a superb free-kick by Adam Langdale.

Goddard restored the two-goal advantage with a piece of individual brilliance that beat three Rowfant defenders and then the keeper.

Rowfant were not giving in. Chris Mallett pounced on a defensive error and gave them hope before the lively Brinkhurst produced a classy finish to draw them level.

But in true Unicorn fashion and for the second week running they showed great character to score the fifth and final goal through captain Parker.

MoM for Unicorn was Goddard.

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