THE FINAL games of the season were played last weekend as the Northwards Shetland Works League wrapped up until next year. The Association Cup final saw reigning champs Cosmos take on Chernobyl for the final honours of the season. Chernobyl started as marginal favourites, after their semi-final epic victory over Banks. However, the hoops found themselves 4-1 down early in the second half, but amazingly repeated their trick from their last cup final victory by recovering from a three goal deficit again to win 6-4.
The final league game saw the re-arranged Wast Linga Ramblers v Wrultizers match end in an entertaining 2-2 draw.
Association Cup final
CF Cosmos 4, Dynamo Chernobyl 6
Chernobyl staged a remarkable comeback to secure the cup in an action-packed encounter which provided a fitting finale to the season.
Injuries to defensive stalwarts Craig Duncan and Paul Baxter saw Chernobyl take to a sun-kissed Seafield with an untried back four. Award-winning florist Iain Smith replacing Duncan while George Michael look-alike Peter Smith filled in at right back.
League champions Cosmos started brightly, enjoying the bulk of possession, only to fall behind after 10 minutes. Adam Swift maintained his perfect record from the spot after Ian Bray had his heels clipped when through on goal.
The goal clearly unsettled Cosmos and they could have fallen further behind moments later. A surging run and cross from George Abernathy set up Robbie Goudie whose rising shot kissed the crossbar.
Cosmos came more into the game with their pace and movement proving an increasing threat. Mick Davies duly levelled matters when he met a deflected Gregory Machowski cross at the far post to score with a downwards header.
Davies netted a quickfire second when he diverted home an angled drive from Gary Wiseman while lying on the goal line.
Despite falling behind the hoops continued to threaten with Goudie blazing over when well placed and then striking the post following good work from Bray.
Cosmos continued to ride their luck before increasing their advantage on the stroke of half time, Thomas Sinclair ghosting between two defenders to chest home another dangerous Machowski cross.
Any chance of a second-half fightback appeared to disappear within minutes of the restart, the hoops defence failing to deal with a hopeful clearance allowing Darren Johnson to slot the ball beyond a helpless Colin Fraser.
John Wiseman had the chance to add a fifth when he powered through the midfield only to strike the woodwork with his curling effort.
At this stage Cosmos had more than one hand on the cup. Chernobyl, however, refused to fold and only a last-ditch tackle from Tor Neil Halvorsen denied Bray. Unfortunately for Bray he picked up a knock in the tackle and had to be replaced by Sammy Sjoberg.
Cosmos seemed content to sit on their lead and they paid the price after 65 minutes. Magnus Malcolmson threaded a pass through a crowded defence allowing Robert Wright to smash the ball over the diving keeper.
The goal gave Chernobyl renewed hope which was further enhanced a minute later. Goudie released Adam Swift who steadied himself before unleashing an unstoppable dipping volley which flew into the roof of the net.
Cosmos were clearly rattled and they suffered a further set back moments later, Darren Johnson earning a red card after lashing out following a rather innocuous challenge from Sjoberg.
Now missing their best player Cosmos continued to be pushed back and Chernobyl soon equalised. A deep corner from Swift saw Malcolmson kill the ball on his chest before drilling a low shot through a sea of legs and in at the far post.
Chernobyl were now in control and they went ahead 10 minutes from time. An incisive pass from David Smith released Goudie whose powerful shot gave the keeper no chance.
Goudie soon added a sixth when he outpaced the defence to cut across the keeper and slot the ball home.
Cosmos flung bodies forward in the final five minutes but Iain Smith, Peter Smith and Will Arthur all flung themselves into the tackles to ensure a Chernobyl victory.
Northwards Shetland Works League
Wast Linga Ramblers 2, Wrultizers 2
Ramblers managed to hold Tizers until midway through the first half, when Chris Polson slipped a pass through to Stuart Grains who finished neatly past keeper Sean Leask.
The second half started with constant pressure from Ramblers, and this paid dividends when Neil Eunson fed the ball to Malcolm Leask whose cross was flicked on by Tammy Stewart to Gary Leask, who with sheer grit and determination fired the ball home.
This inspired Ramblers to an onslaught on the northerners’ goal but they were unable to convert due to hard work from Tizers defender Adam Doull.
Ramblers’ chances came from Laurence Tulloch and Tammy Stewart who were both wearing Jordan Leask’s shooting boots.
Tizers came back and were rewarded with a penalty when Chris Polson was decked in the box, with Jamie Manson coverting in style.
Ramblers fought back with determination, camping themselves in the Tizers half. The long-awaited equaliser came when Gary Leask slipped the ball to Paul Leask who smashed in a right-foot shot left of the keeper.
Best for Tizers were Dwain Nicolson and Adam Doull, while Kevin Valente and experienced youngster Neil Eunson shone for Ramblers.