We travelled to Derby with a strong squad and lots of confidence and were only 90 seconds away from winning the tournament only to fall to a late equaliser and defeat in the final on penalties to Reading.
The tournament started with a round robin league of eight teams to decide positions. The top two in the league playing the final. In a very fast tournament (lots of borderline running being allowed) we played some excellent football and were very tight at the back conceding only one goal due to a bad cross field pass from the skipper. When teams did break through Trevor Oliver was there to stop them. Our main defenders were Kurt and Ian and they were rock solid allowing Pete, Paul, Jez, Scott and Taff to interchange in front of them creating a lot of chances.
Two goals in particular stood out; an excellent team goal against Northampton from back to front, scored by Scott and a thumping shot from Paul versus Middlesborough from a very wide angle that smashed into the net.
The round robin game versus Reading was a tight 0-0 draw and with both teams unbeaten we faced each other in the final. Strollers scored an early goal through Scott and were on top for the entire game but a late, slightly scuffed effort with under 2 minutes to play found the corner of the net and we were forced to penalties. These went all the way with all six players on the field at the end having to take a pen, including the keepers. It came down to the last kick with both keepers. Trevor sent the keeper the wrong way on his but their keeper managed to block it with his foot. Unfortunately that keeper turned hero of the day for Reading as he stepped up and put his penalty away to take the cup to Reading.
Trevor Oliver (GK), Taff Lovesey, Pete Kelly, Scott Sawers, Paul Blakemore, Kurt Garbutt, Jez Norris, Ian Cooke
W 1-0 Derby A (Pete K)
W 2-1 Northampton (Paul B, Scott S)
D 0-0 Reading
W 2-0 Derby C Scott S, Jez)
W 3-0 Middlesborough (Paul B x 2, Jez)
W 5-0 Ashbourne (Paul B x 2, Ian C, Taff, Jez)
W 1-0 Derby B (Scott S)
D 1-1 Reading (Scott S)
lost 3-4 on pens