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MSC Express West Cheshire League Division One leaders, Mersey Royal, will line up in no less than four cup finals this season, after a solitary strike from Liam Driscoll and the agility of goalkeeper Josh Brooks, inspired the cup holders to a 1-0 victory over Division Two promotion-chasing Bravehearts, Ashville Res. , in Saturday’s Cheshire County FA Amateur Cup semi-final.
As Cheshire FA representatives, the Royal are already through to the Northern Counties Cup final and are also due to appear in both the Wirral DFA Senior Cup and Pyke Cup finals and with a healthy lead at the top, retaining the Division One title they won for the first time last season is also very much in the grasp of Glynn Norman’s Invincibles.
Sadly, despite a goal from Liam Smith, the possibility of an all-West Cheshire Amateur Cup final failed to materialise, when Newton lost 2-1 to a late winner at Cheshire AFL side Broadheath Central.
It was also a bad day for West Cheshire clubs Maghull Res. and Marshalls Res, who were denied places in the LCFA Junior Cup semi-finals following respective defeats at the hands of FC King Harry and St. Margarets Old Boys.
Maghull lost 5-4 on pens following a 0-0 result while Ben Fulton obliged for Marshalls Res. who went down 3-1.
Finalists for the West Cheshire Shield were resolved after Division Three title rivals, Hooton and Higher Bebington Kelma both progressed.
League leaders, Hooton celebrated a hard-fought 6-3 extra-time victory over Capenhurst Villa Res., highlighted by a four-goal salvo from Joel Whalley. John Clampitt and Joe Keenan also contributed with Tom Hockley, Harry Bell and Matty Vickers in reply for Cape.
In the other semi, a smart double from Luke Walker was supplemented by a further effort from Ben Kierman as Higher Bebington Kelma eclipsed Chester Nomads Res. 3-0.
On the League scene, second-placed Bootle St. Edmunds scored via Karl Bergqvist but saw their Division One title chances further evaporate after they capitulated 2-1 to goals from Vauxhall Motors Res.‘ Connor Egan and Dan Smith.
Pyke Cup finalists, Mossley Hill Ath., handily poised in fourth place, made up further ground after efforts from John O’Sullivan, Owen Cassidy, Will Maddock, and Mark Owens clinched a 4-1 win over Marshalls, who had Jack Ward on target.
Rainhill Town registered their eighth win of the season and stayed in sixth place in the table, Joe Clifton bagging the games’ only goal to deny basement outfit Ellesmere Port Town, while Chester Nomads were indebted to efforts from Rory Harper, Jack Delgado, and an own goal for their 3-2 success at Aintree Villa. Mark Barnes and Joe Farrell found the net for the hosts.
In Division Two, Runcorn Sports bolstered their strong claims for promotion and were elevated to third place in the table, following a 5-2 decision over Mossley Hill Ath. Res. Brothers Dom (2) and Ryan Bazley, Mick O’Neil, and Reece Dwyer shared the goals with Sam Bowsie and Hakeem Munns in response for Mossley.
Elsewhere, evergreen campaigner, Cam Dalton, along with Harvey Billington and Adam Shelton were South Liverpool Res.‘ marksmen in a 3-2 triumph at West Kirby (pictured), who scored through Connor Egan and Dan Smith.
On Wednesday evening, Derek Taylor and Leon Jones applied the finishing touches as Wirral DFA Amateur Cup and Haworth & Gallagher Bowl finalists, Ashville Res., remained focussed on top-flight football next season, when they edged a narrow 2-1 win over Mossley Hill Ath Res., whose scorer was Jonathan Liddle.
Saturday’s Division Three Action saw Ellesmere Port Town Res., courtesy of efforts from Mike Simpson, John Skipsey, Ollie Nicholson, and Kieran Fenton, get the better of Groves to post a 4-2 win. Kyle Foster and Ryan Maxwell netted Groves’ consolations.
Kos Alexopolous, Sam Stephens, Gaz Gerrard, and Sam Nixon found the net for Helsby Res. in their 4 – 4 stalemate with local rivals, Runcorn Sports Res.
Only one fixture took place in the Youth Division, and in a 3-3 finish, Kian Skinley was a hat-trick hero for City of Liverpool with replies from Alex McDermott (2) and Jack Todd earning fourth-placed BRNESC a share of the spoils.
Images: West Kirby (Black &White) v South Liverpool FC Reserves (Red) – Credit: Bob Shaw
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