Northampton Town Ladies 3
Brackley Sports Ladies 1
A goal at the end of each period of extra time was all that separated the sides as Sports Ladies put on a fantastic display, bowing out of the NFA Womens Cup at the quarter-final stage to Midlands Combination side Northampton Town at Roade on Sunday.
Despite the hosts being three leagues above Sports, the gap in class was difficult to see as Sports continually frustrated the Cobblers with a determined display as they looked to cause a major upset against the holders. The breakthrough came in what was one of the hosts few early attacks, forcing a corner which was duly finished from close range in the fifteenth minute.
But Sports continued to push, containing all attacks and creating a number of chances, capatilising on the Cobblers hesitancy in defence. This pressure paid off on 40 minutes as Dani Busby found herself in possession and in space giving her time to coolly beat the keeper from 25 yards to give Sports a well-deserved equaliser at the teams went in for the break.
The second half saw a solid performance by Sports back four and any attacks were asily dealt with by keeper Jackie Cunningham. As time ticked away, both teams threw everything at each other, but it was to no avail as things remained level at the end of normal time.
As tired legs set in from both sides the tempo slowed, but the chances didn’t. The Cobblers finally regained the lead in the last minute with a shot from range. With fifteen minutes left, the Cobblers stamina began to show as they began to edge ahead but Sports still refused to give up, despite having thrown everything at the hosts.
In the last minute of extra time the hosts wrapped the game up with a third but Sports can hold their heads high for a fantastic team performance in which the players did themselves and the club proud.
This Sunday, Sports Ladies are finally back in league action, with Peterborough Hamptons visiting Springfield Way, kick-off 2pm.