East Coast Bays Summer Sevens
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The Premiers and Development team have finished their season.
East Coast Bays exited the Chatham Cup with a whimper, totally out thought and out played by Birkenhead United. Very few Bays players emerged with any sort of kudos, giving the ball away far too often and reverting to long punts upfield, meaning the ball came straight back.
The loss of Avi Estrin, with a dislocated knee, three minutes into the game, may well have unsettled the team, but was no excuse for the display that followed.
Birkenhead were quicker to the ball, showing more urgency and desire to win.
Following the injury break, Birkenhead fired the first shot with David Parkinson heading wide. Bays countered with a fine break from Andre de Jong who split the defence and under pressure place his shot just wide of the upright.
Dylan Stansfield headed wide from a corner and apart from another De Jong foray later in the half was the only time the Birkenhead defence came under any pressure.
Chad Coombes headed over from a corner, and Alex Carr blocked Dan Morgan, who was causing the Bays defence lots of problems, heading wide and having a free kick blocked on the line as well as feeding quality ball to the Birkenhead attack. A great save by Carr, just before the break, kept the scoreboard quiet.
The second half saw Birkenhead again dominate, but without finishing until a contentious penalty decision given by the assistant referee in the 53rd minute. Doubt exists as to weather it was a handball and if it was in the area.
Jack Hobson-McVeagh made no mistake from the spot, with an unstoppable drive low into the corner of the net. Seven minutes later, a Birkenhead attack found Morgan alone on the left, he passed to Adam Dickenson, who scored from close range.
Carr made a good save to deny Dickenson and Godwin Darkwa shot wide from a break before Bays started to fire a few shots in anger.
De Jong forced a good save from Danny Robinson and the keeper denied James Anderson one on one and then saved from Lee Robinson during a period in which Bays dominated.
A stoppage time drive from Brock Messenger was headed off the line and then it was all over. Bays out of the Cup and can now concentrate on the Championship.
Great contributions from Carr and De Jong.
Team: Carr, Messenger, James Anderson, Beguely, Estrin (Forrester 3), Bresnahan, Olla, De Jong, Barnett (Robinson 58), Stansfield, Jack Anderson (White 67)