Yoker Through To Central League Cup Final

Benburb 1 Yoker Athletic 3

Report courtesy of Bens

A quick return to action after Monday`s heroics as we welcome Yoker Athletic to New Tinto Park for the first time. The last time I remember us playing Yoker is a few seasons back when they won the league and we beat them 0-3 at Holm park to secure promotion ourselves on the last day of the season. Gaffer Paul is still away and Graysie continues in his absence, I`m viewing from the Tommy Douglas stand.

Bens kick off shooting away from the pavilion, the opening spell is relatively quiet till Yoker`s Henry fires a 22-yard drive past the near post to wake the game up. Gallacher then finds Soutar at the back post from a near side corner, but his effort is deflected out and L. Campbell punches clear the resulting corner from the far side.

A. Wright finds Meechan in the box with a long throw-in from the near side but his header is cleared by Smith. Blackwood then sends over a corner from the near side, Meechan meets it with a diving header that just skims past the far post.

Roberts on the near side for the Whe Ho, threads Carson through into the penalty area on the overlap, but Greer has tracked back to intercept and clear. Yoker then take the lead with a good move starting from a throw-in on the far side to Allan, who touches onto Carson on the near side, he finds Henry in the middle who lays off for Hynes to cut back for Bailey to drive a low shot past Sommerville into the near corner, 0-1 (18).

Bens respond immediately, Sommerville distributes early to Blackwood on the far side, he lays inside to Jackson who fires a 25-yard drive that climbs all the way over the bar. Blackwood finds Jarvie with a quick throw-in on the far side, the striker gets his cross in from the byeline that gets deflected then passed back to L. Campbell who then manages to scramble clear.

Roberts shakes off the attentions of Greer to bring out a good save from Sommerville and Bens defence clear Maitland`s far side corner kick. Maitland then charges down a clearance from Greer to race into the box, but he pulls his shot past the far post as Sommerville closes the angles.

Another Maitland corner this time from the near side is cleared out as far as Roberts, he fires in a low 22-yard drive that Sommerville does well to get down to. Bailey in the middle lays off to Roberts on the near flank, he sends Carson down the line to fire over a cross that finds Maitland, but Sommerville is well positioned to receive his header.

Bens level the tie when A. Wright on the near side tries to find L. Lovering, it`s half cleared by Carson only as far as Gallacher who lays off for Jarvie to fire an unstoppable 22-yard left foot drive into the far right top corner, 1-1 (32). Meechan on the halfway line then sends A. Wright down the far side but his cross from the byeline flashes across goal with no takers.

A Smith free kick from around 30 yards on the far side finds MacDonald in the box, but his header is well wide of the target. L. Lovering on the halfway line sends in a beautifully weighted ball to Jarvie in the box, but his first touch lets him down and Yoker defence mop up. Hynes in the middle tees up Maitland but he fires his shot well over from around 22 yards.

Half Time: Benburb 1 Yoker Athletic 1

Bens win an early corner on the far side McCrone plays it short to Blackwood, but his shot from the corner of the box is charged down as Yoker defence rush out. Blackwood is booked for dissent (47) as he complains about some heavy challenges, he then sends a low corner from the far side toward the near post that L. Campbell and Harvey combine to clear behind, Blackwood sends it over again, Harvey wins the 50/50 with Meechan, it breaks for McCrone who lays off to Soutar, but he pulls his shot past the near post.

There`s a two-minute stoppage then Yoker replace the injured Bailey with Rankin (54). A Bens throw-in on the far side, A. Wright to L. Lovering onto Jarvie who sends his cross over to Blackwood on the near side in the box, he touches on for Soutar who tees up Jackson on the edge of the box who brings out another good save from L. Campbell.

Bens get hit with a sucker punch when Jarvie`s cross from the far side is cut out and knocked long down the far side by Maitland for Hynes to chase down, he draws the keeper and slots home through his legs, 1-2 (60).

Meechan picks up a very soft booking (63) then Yoker replace Carson with Arbuckle (64). Maitland just inside his own half again carves Bens defence open when he finds Hynes in a similar position, but this time he cuts across Bens box to return the favour laying off for Maitland to slot past Sommerville, 1-3 (67).

Gallacher sends a 20-yard free kick on the near side straight at L. Campbell then Maitland finds Arbuckle from a near side corner but his shot is charged down. Greer at halfway finds Jarvie down the far side, he races to the byeline and whips an inviting ball across the face of goal with no takers.

Metcalfe comes on for Soutar (74) and Yoker bring on A. Campbell for Hynes (75), McCrone wastes a far side corner then Gallacher is the third Bens player booked (78). Roberts on the near side lays off to MacDonald to Henry to Arbuckle onto Maitland on the edge of the box, but he fires well over the top.

Bens keep pushing forward Jackson lays off to Jarvie who finds Metcalfe on the near side but he pulls his shot past the near post. Rankin then finds room for a low shot from just inside the box that Sommerville does well to get down to then Jarvie fires one in from the far side that L. Campbell deals with and the cup dream dies for Bens.

Ah well it wasn`t to be as we came up against a strong Yoker side on the back of a tough tie on Monday, the boys gave their all and can hold their heads high as they head off for the close season break to recharge, thanks for all your efforts this season guys.

M.o.T.M. Tonight was a close affair with votes spread around the pitch, but Ryan McCrone takes the final man of the match of this season by one vote, well done Flash.

Well that`s definitely the final report of the season from me, I have some personal issues that need attended to so hopefully I will be back ready for the new season starting, all the best take care.


Benburb: Sommerville, Soutar, A. Wright, Greer, Meechan, Jackson, Blackwood, Gallacher, Jarvie, McCrone, L. Lovering. Subs: Metcalfe, K. Wright.

Yoker Athletic: L. Campbell, Carson, Smith, Allan, Harvey, Henry, Roberts, Hynes, Maitland, MacDonald. Subs: Rankin, Arbuckle, Ross, A. Campbell, Wilson.

Referee: Mr Stephen Graham.

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