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Bromsgrove Rovers 1 Hitchin Town 2

Tuesday, April 25 2006

Hitchin won the Errea Cup in style at Bromsgrove, in only their second season in the Southern League, winning 3-1 on aggregate. 

Darren Salton’s team brought back to Hitchin arguably the most prestigious piece of silverware since the London Senior Cup was won in 1970. The Canaries won no less than seven games on the way to winning a competition that ranks only behind the two FA competitions in importance.

There was never any danger of Hitchin surrendering their one goal lead from the first leg. Goalkeeper Richard Wilmot was rarely troubled, and in the heart of defence, David Deeney, Liam Folds and Stuart Hammonds were outstanding. But the big difference for the Canaries, as it has been all season, was the role played by skipper Josh Sozzo.

It was Sozzo that opened the scoring after 18 minutes. A free kick from Mark Ducket eluded the Bromsgrove defence and Sozzo crept in to get a slight touch and steer the ball into the net.

Hitchin could have scored again when Gavin Jaggard and Daniel French combined and the latter saw his shot saved by goalkeeper Lee Evans.

Bromsgrove, for all their effort, went close just once in the first half, a header by Exodus Geohagen that hit the stanchion. Two minutes from half-time, however, Hitchin extended their lead and all but finished the tie. Sozzo laid the ball off to Jaggard and he calmly shot low into the net.

The second half, with Bromsgrove playing downhill, was a different affair, with Hitchin’s defence coming under pressure. But once more, Folds, Hammonds, Ducket, Deeney and Wilmot stood firm. Bromsgrove’s Doyle skipped his way through but saw his shot blocked by Wilmot, and Neil Davis also had a chance when he volleyed over the bar.

The home side eventually scored in the 77th minute, Paul Moore sliding the ball into the net after being teed-up by Davis. It was not the start of a comeback, however, and Hitchin finished the game comfortably to win their first prize of any sort for five years and their first non-county competition since 1991.

Hitchin: Wilmot, Deeney, Ducket, Hammonds, Folds, Hicks (Lochhead 55), Cavill, Lamacraft, Jaggard (Phelan 75), Sozzo, French (Mills 89)

The Canaries celebrate with the Errea Cup !

The Canaries celebrate with the Errea Cup.

(Photo courtesy of Brian Gray)





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