The 1st team of Icklesham Casuals recovered from 2-0 down, to defeat West Hill United 4-2, in the second round of the Hastings Junior Cup, in a closely fought game which could have gone either way, up until the last few minutes.
The match was switched to Icklesham, and, on an extremely difficult pitch, the Casuals started very poorly and conceded two early goals. They gradually got into the game and pulled a goal back in the 31st minute, when Rob Levett converted a penalty, awarded for a push in the area.
West Hill continued to create better chances in the first period, and but for some excellent saves by Icklesham keeper, Jack Davies, and the woodwork, the game could have been over by half time.
Icklesham started the second half on the front foot, but failed to convert a number of chances to equalise. The game turned in the 61st minute, when a rare West Hill attack saw a fine shot come back off the left hand post, only for Icklesham to break and latch on to a poor back pass, for Phil Badrock to level the scores. The Casuals pushed forward for the winner, which came in the 85th minute, when Levett got his second goal of the game. Two minutes later, Sean Baker ran through to make the game safe. In the quarter final, the team will be away to Westfield III.
The 2nd Casuals team also started badly, in their game away to Punnetts Town, in the quarter final of the Hastings Lower Divisions Cup, playing as though they didn’t know each other and were 3-0 down in fifteen minutes. They then began to run at the Punnetts Town defence, with chances coming and being missed, including striking the bar.
At the interval, the Casuals were still confident the game wasn’t over, but then conceded two more quick goals at the start of the second period. At 5-0 down, with 30 minutes to go, Icklesham started playing, scoring four great goals, the best of which was a 60 yard run down the left by Ollie Beaumont, who cut in and beat the keeper at the near post. Two other goals were disallowed, Punnetts Town hanging on at the end, with a last minute shot by Casuals skipper Nick Bellhouse, well saved by the home goalie.
Photo: David Mayne