Chatham Cup SF ECB 2 Nelson Suburbs 1





If Bays had taken their first half chances, it could have been all over by halftime instead of turning into a nail biter. Before a crowd of over 700, Bays began their quest for their first ever appearance in the Chatham Cup final and a bad backpass almost let Nelson in in the fourth minute. One minute later the crowd went wild after a Leigh Kenyon shot was fumbled by the Nelson goalkeeper and Joe Bresnahan was on hand to bundle the ball into the net, giving Bays an early lead. Coaches Willy Gerdsen and Rod Grove had expressed disquiet with the pace of the Nelson attack, especially Kidstone Billy, the Solomon Island international, and he was proving a problem for the Bays defence. With 11 minutes on the clock he broke free only to shoot wide. At the other end the Nelson keeper was having his own problems with handling, having a clearance charged down by Jack Beguely and missing a Jeff Campbell corner, which was cleared off the line. For ten minutes either side of the half hour mark, Bays pummeled the Nelson defence and should have settled the game there and then. Dan Peat was proving a handful and three times had shots deflected for corners while Arek Kubicki was wide on another occasion. With Bays spurning these chances,it was not surprising that Nelson got back into the game. Aidan Gwilt was forced to save at the feet of Billy with Frazer Maebule putting over the bar from in front of goal. With five minutes remaining in the half, Billy"s pace got the better of Nick Hyde and the striker made no mistake to draw Nelson level. Dan Morgan-Howell and Peat both shot wide in the final minutes of the half and George Suri was denied by a goal line clearance. The second half resembled trench warfare, with attack and counter from both sides. Nelson had a good chance in the 57th minute when a Joel Wiecrem drive was deflected on to the upright by Gwilt. The defining moment came with fifteen minutes remaining when the pace of Peat was too much for the Nelson defence who dumped him in the box. Peat took the penalty which was saved but the referee ordered it retaken after encroachment by the Nelson side. Jeff Campbell took the second chance and made no mistake. Nelson found it hard to get back and threaten the Bays goal while Ryley Webster and peat were both denied at the other end. The final whistle came as a relief to players and spectators followed by scenes of joy as Bays had made their first ever Cup Final.



Team: Gwilt, Forrest, Hyde, Suri, Zoghby, Kenyon, Morgan-Howell (Webster 63), Campbell, Bresnahan, Beguely (Kubicki 24 sub Estrin 78), Peat



Scorers: Bresnahan 5, Campbell (pen) 76






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