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Welwyn Garden City

Home of the "Citizens" - Established 1921


Herns Way, Panshanger, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL7 1TA

WGC were denied their first silverware of the season, when high riding Hoddesdon repelled Adam Fisher's side successfully for most of the second-half of the SSML Premier Division Cup final at neutral Biggleswade United.


It was almost a carbon-copy performance from the East Herts side, who sit second in the Premier table, to their display at Herns Lane just six weeks before.


They took the lead with the only goal of the game, scored by their leading scorer Mark Summers, then kept WGC and in, particular, the in-form Dave Parkinson, at bay for the remainder of the final, in an efficient, rather than flairful display.


The Citizens will have a second chance to put silverware in the Herns Lane trophy cabinet on Wednesday week, when they meet Berkhamsted in the League Trophy final, at Harefield.


WGC clearly settled the better in this final and forced the pace for the opening half-hour.


Parkinson, scorer of five goals in successive games, had the first foray on goal, when going clear of the Hoddesdon defence, but keeper Luke Robinson saved at his feet.


Although the Citizens clearly held sway in terms of territory and possession for the opening stages, but didn't really trouble the solid Hoddesdon back-line, while the opposition created very little until 10 minutes from the break.


Then from a rare Hoddesdon corner, central defender Ryan McMenemy got in a powerful header from which Joe Croft, back in the WGC goal, had to make a fine reaction save, forward Ashley Kersey, back helping out, completing the clearance.


The dangerous Summers sparked into action on the stroke of the interval, getting goal-side of John McGrandles to race through and lob Croft to clear the keeper and the crossbar by inches, as Hoddesdon finished with a late burst.


That was continued on the restart. Croft had to make a save in the opening minute of the second-half and WGC didn't clear their lines.


Jay Welsh crucially gave the ball away on the left by-line and Summers whipped in an instant shot that seemed to surprise Croft, beating the keeper on his near post, for 1-0.


WGC responded immediately when Welsh put in a high free-kick, knocked down by Kersey for top scorer Bronti to lift over the top, within minutes of the Citizens falling behind.


Then Parkinson, easily WGC's most potent weapon on the night, went on a personal mission to level the scores.


On 69 minutes a strong run by Kersey down the right, put the winger through, but Robinson made a fine save with his feet.


Hoddesdon broke out and winger Danny Light lifted their best second-half chance over after good work by Brett O'Connor before WGC ended the game laying siege to the Hoddesdon goal.


Parkinson flashed a fierce effort across the face of goal, that missed the far corner by a whisker and then hit another powerful effort on the turn, that was turned away impressively by keeper Robinson.


WGC pressed to the end, but Hoddesdon refused to be breached and Fisher's side finished with their heads held high, but no silverware to show for their valiant efforts.


WGC: Croft, Perrin, Boodhoo, McGrandles, Welsh (Arnott 83), Payne, Smith (Dimmock 78), Robins, Bronti (Caswell 68), Kersey, Parkinson.

Welwyn Garden City FC 0 - 1 Hoddesdon