Thrills and spills aplenty as HSBC stages cup semis
Who is going to make it to Bramall Lane? Well we should know as it's semi-final day in this season's League Twentytwo Cup this weekend.
In semi-final number one CBC Premier side and last season’s winners Handsworth Old Crown entertain Division Two Crookes FC.
Old Crown started their defence with a 3-2 win over Division One side Cobden View in Round Two before repeating that scoreline at Hallam in Round Three. A 4-2 win over fellow CBC Premier side Norton Oaks A secured their place in the final four.
Crookes though shouldn’t be discounted as they have knocked out teams from higher divisions en route to their first semi-final.
An 11-1 win over Division One side Civil Sports B in Round Two was followed by a superb 2-0 win at current CBC Premier champions Stannington Village in the third round.
They made it a Civil Sports double in the quarter final when they overcame the A version 3-1 so Crown might a tough assignment on their hands.
Handsworth will look to their front trio of Russ Hobson, David Sills and Matt Ellis to provide the firepower, but they will need to be wary of Crookes’ leading marksmen Liam Cartledge and Matt Cowen.
The second semi-final is also interestingly poised as Norton Sportsman from Division One play a Wadsley Bridge Pheasant side from the CBC Premier with eyes on a second CBC Premier and Twentytwo Cup double in three years.
Norton needed a penalty shoot-out to see off CBC Premier Killamarsh Juniors in the second round before winning by the odd goal in seven at Division Two Mosborough Reds in the third.
They made the semi-final with a 2-1 win over a second Division Two side in the shape of Boynton Sports.
Pheasant’s route to the final four has also featured three close run games.
A 3-1 home win over Division One Ranch set them on the way before a Jordan Turner winner was enough to knock out fellow CBC Premier side Redmires 2-1 in the third round.
A place in the semi final was obtained in a seven goal thriller with Division One’s Chapeltown RBL with the winner coming deep in time added on.
Norton will look to the prolific Brad Bowland to get their goals, while Adam Askwith is likely to be the big danger for Pheasant.
Both ties are at the HSBC Sports Ground, Dore, and both games kick-off at 11 am.
The Sunday Cups semi-finals will try again after last weekend’s games fell victim to the snow. The semi-final of the County FA Sunday Senior Cup see Redmires trying to become the first Blades Super Draw League team to reach the final against Mexborough & District Sunday League’s title favourites Westville and it’s an intriguing tie as Redmires put them out in Round Four last season with a 6-5 victory in a penalty shoot-out after the sides had been deadlocked at 2-2. The winners will face the winner of Rotherham’s Joker v Wombwell Main from Barnsley.
The League is certain to have at least one finalist in the Sunday Junior Cup as Division Two Royal Earl entertain Division One Southey Social.
Despite being a division below their visitors, Earl will start favourites as they attempt to become possibly the first club to have won both the Senior and Junior Cups.
The final could be an all-Blades Super Draw final for a second successive year as Division Two Mosborough Whites travel to Barnsley Premier League’s Swaithe FC.
It will be a tough ask for the Whites as Swaithe put out our Division Two title favourites Crookes FC in the quarter finals, but the Whites came through their quarter final against Swinton Robin Hood against all the odds so they shouldn’t be ruled out.
With Pheasant in League Cup action we could see new leaders in the CBC Premier as second placed Wickersley have a winnable home league game.
They host a Norton Oaks A side desperate for points to avoid the drop but Wickersley should have enough about them to win.
Hallam FC’s relegation fears could all be but confirmed if Penistone Church defeat them as expected. Current champions Stannington Village have been in splendid form recently and will be fancied strongly to come away from Killamarsh with the points.
Woodseats Club, like Norton Oaks A, need the points to dig themselves out of danger but visitors Intake Old Boys are capable of inflicting another loss on Club.
Into Division One and Chapeltown RBL should maintain their unbeaten run, and the League’s last one too, with an away win at Ranch. Ranch, if they win, could go fifth in the table so that could be inspiration to them as well.
Oughtibridge WM should take maximum points at home when they host a Brinsworth Phoenix side still not out of relegation trouble whilst Woodhouse Village will be hoping to claw themselves back into the promotion race as they play a Norton Oaks B side, like Phoenix, involved a relegation scrap.
Division Two’s pick of the day sees fourth placed Forum host fifth placed Boynton Sports with only goal difference separating the sides.
If either win, they could go third if current incumbents of that position Wadsley Horse and Jockey unexpectedly slip up at a Shakey side that have struggled this season.
Woodhouse JFC will play host to Woodseats Chantrey in a re-arranged game, whilst Mosborough Reds should be too sweet for a Cadbury side that are one place but ten points adrift of their hosts.
FIXTURES IN BRIEF
25-Mar SENIOR SUNDAY CUP SEMI-FINAL Redmires v Westville.
JUNIOR SUNDAY CUP SEMI-FINALS Royal Earl v Southey Social; Swaithe v Mosborough Whites.
TWENTYTWO CUP SEMI-FINALS Hdswth Old Crown v Crookes FC; Norton Sportsman v WB Pheasant.
CBC PREMIER Killamarsh Juniors v Stannington Village; Penistone Church v Hallam FC; Wickersley Youth v Norton Oaks A; Woodseats Club v Intake Old Boys.
DIVISION 1 Oughtibridge WM v Brinsworth Phoenix; Ranch v Chapeltown RBL; Woodhouse Village v Norton Oaks B.
DIVISION 2 Forum FCCO v Boynton Sports; Mosborough Reds v Cadbury; Shakey v W Horse & Jockey; Woodhouse JFC v Woodseats Chantrey