This year’s Parish Cup football competition is now up and running, with Whalsay already through to the semi-final where they will face either Southend United or Yell.
The preliminary round saw fairly comfortable wins for Southend, Unst and Westside United and the remaining quarter-finals are: Delting v Unst, Westside United v Bressay and Yell v Southend.
Parish Cup (preliminary round)
Burra 0, Southend 4
Both sides were keen to get off to a good start in this eagerly-awaited encounter on a near perfect night with the Burra playing surface in excellent condition.
The first chance fell for the visitors with forward Alwyn Flaws heading just wide after a lovely cross from the right by John-Robert Burgess.
Southend didn’t have long to wait to open the scoring, however, when Leighton Flaws’s cross was met by John-Robert Burgess who netted with a well-placed header.
Burra responded well to the early set-back and created their first chance of note on the 10-minute mark. John-Brian Adamson’s cross in from the left caused panic in the Southend defence and the ball deflected off the foot of Leighton Flaws toward his own goal. With the ball rolling agonisingly towards goal Flaws did well to rush back and clear the ball off his own line.
Southend doubled the lead 10 minutes before half-time after John-Robert Burgess won a crunching tackle in midfield. The ball broke to Jamie Robertson who played a perfectly weighted through pass for his strike partner Alwyn Flaws who coolly slotted past Burra keeper Geoffrey Hay.
Burra looked for a lifeline just before the interval with their best efforts coming from an Ian Hannah free kick and a Maurice Fraser left-foot strike. Unfortunately for the home side both failed to trouble Duncan Flaws in the Southend goal.
Burra started the second half in determined mood with John Brian Adamson and Shane Groat up front looking to get them back into the game. Groat had a good effort from range which was comfortably saved by Flaws.
Southend got the decisive third goal on the hour mark after a mix-up in the Burra defence following a throw in. Theye failed to react to the loose ball and Alwyn Flaws managed to pip team mate John-Robert Burgess to the ball to tap home. To be fair to Burgess this was probably the first 50-50 challenge he had failed to win as he and midfield partner Kevin Manson took control of the midfield.
Southend were starting to enjoy themselves now and were playing some nice passing football as Burra were beginning to tire. They nearly extended their lead with 20 minutes left with the best move of the match. Kevin Manson slid a wonderful through ball to Leighton Flaws down the right wing. He beat the full back, drove to the byline and played an inch perfect cutback to Jamie Robertson whose first-time effort flashed past Hay’s right-hand post.
Unst 5, Sandwick 0
Unst started in a positive manner and scored all their goals in the first half. After seven minutes Connel Gresham broke down the right wing and smashed an unstoppable shot past Eric Peterson in the Sandwick goal.
Unst continued to press and in the 18th minute a corner from the left from Erik Thomson was met by Darren Thomson. Even with his back to goal he managed to knock the ball home from close range.
The match ebbed and flowed after that but on the half-hour mark Unst’s Paul Henderson found David Thomson clear on the right wing. Thomson swung in the cross for Gary Burns to neatly nod home low to the keeper’s left. Burns came close shortly after with a header which smacked off the crossbar, but he made no mistake five minutes later with a left-foot strike from the edge of the box.
Sandwick’s James Jamieson had to leave the pitch at his point with a blow to his head but Unst were well in command now.
Burns completed his hat trick with another header from a David Thomson cross to make it five for the home side.
The large support were expecting more goals in the second half but Sandwick reorganised under manager Kenny Malcolmson and competed well for every ball.
Unst brought on all their substitutes in the second half and continued to press for more goals. David MacMillan had what appeared to be a good effort chalked off by referee Mark Goodhand but the visitors’ defence held firm and there were no more goals.
Unst manager Paul Bell can be well pleased with his side’s performance, particularly the strike partnership of Gresham and Burns up front, who were playing together for the first time, and Neil Laurenson at sweeper. Keeper Peterson, Kieron Malcolmson and Robbie Goudie all did well for Sandwick.
Cunningsburgh 2, Westside United 8
Cunningsburgh lined up for their first assault on the cup in five years with some new faces wearing the green shirts. It was the Westsiders who were to score first, with Martin Clark driving home from just outside the box. Jamie Wilson added a second when he outpaced the defence, which had a combined aged of 161 years, to finish neatly.
Russell Gair thought he had brought Cunningsburgh back into the game but his effort was harshly ruled out for offside. Wilson added another to make the half-time score 3-0.
Cunningsburgh did get on the score sheet early in the second half, with a good move being finished with a drive from outside the box from Gair. Unfortunaely, any chance of a comeback was shortlived, with Wilson adding another and Duncan Anderson getting among the goals as well.
Stuart Smith got another for Cunningsburgh after good work from Stuart Fox and young Declan Adamson, but Clark, and Wilson with his fourth and fifth, put the game beyond doubt.
Bruce McCulloch also had the misfortune of missing a penalty late on for Cunningsburgh, although keeper Arthur Johnston would argue that he beat McCulloch for pace in getting down to the post.
Best for Cunningsburgh were Smith, Fox, Adamson and Liam Smith in goals, while Westside put on a great team performance, with the goalscorers and Duncan Fraser standing out. The match was well officiated by Ivan Sinclair.
Next up for the winners are Bressay, making their competitive debut in the cup.
Whalsay 5, Whitedale 0
Whitedale arrived in Whalsay with only 10 players and with the home side fielding a strong side similar to their premier league team it was always going to be difficult for the visitors.
Whalsay started strongly and it wasn’t long before Laurence Pearson burst free to put them in front.
Stuart Shearer added a second soon after when he arrived at the back post to volley home. Keith Pearson made it three when he controlled a through ball on his chest and slotted past the on rushing keeper.
Whitedale, to their credit, worked hard and made it difficult for Whalsay to break them down. A good work rate and the determination to get men behind the ball kept the score down to 3-0 at half time.
The second half saw long periods of home possession but without a real cutting edge. Whitedale worked tirelessly to press the ball and made the occasional foray into the Whalsay half but without a second striker, it proved difficult to test the Whalsay keeper.
Tiredness eventually became a factor late in the game and gaps began to appear in the Whitedale rearguard. Laurence Pearson, to cap a good performance, added another two goals in the dying minutes.
Teams are reminded that the under-21 Parish Cup seven-a-sides take place on Saturday 20th June. Teams should get their entries to Kevin Main on 07795 272053 by Sunday.