Rovers go through

Goals from Mur­ray and Phe­lan help se­cure fi­nal berth

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - SPORT - GAVIN FORDE

WICK­LOW ROVERS booked their place in the Jako Cup fi­nal af­ter they found a way past a tough Ash­ford side on Satur­day at White­gates.

Ash­ford had all the early chances in the games as they looked to get an early goal.

Oisin Den­ver went close on the fourth minute as he ran onto a through ball into the box but his ef­fort was blasted over the bar, Ash­ford again threat­ened the goal on the 6th minute with a low strike from in­side the area from Luke Fitzpa­trick but his shot was to tame for Rovers keeper Aaron Nolan.

The game was very evenly matched in the open­ing 15 min­utes of the game af­ter Rovers dealt with the early pres­sure from their op­po­nents.

Both sides were play­ing counter-at­tack­ing foot­ball which meant it was only a mat­ter of time be­fore one side broke the dead­lock.

It was the home side who opened the scor­ing on the 17th minute with a sweet strike from Aaron Mur­ray.

Mur­ray was played through by his team­mate Char­lie Phe­lan be­fore tak­ing a touch and blast­ing the ball past Ash­ford keeper Fionn Doyle.

Rovers had an­other great op­por­tu­nity to dou­ble their lead on the 22nd minute when Tom Phe­lan picked out Char­lie Phe­lan in the penalty area, Phe­lan took his shot on first time but un­for­tu­nately for the Wick­low at­tacker, he snatched at the shot and blasted over the bar. An­other warn­ing for the away side.

Rovers were in com­plete con­trol af­ter open­ing the scor­ing and be­gan dom­i­nat­ing pos­ses­sion but needed to be more clin­i­cal in front of goal, they had nu­mer­ous of chances to put the game to bed late in the first half but just couldn’t find the back of the net de­spite their many ef­forts.

Ash­ford’s striker Tadhg Lovel and Adam Clack were work­ing hard up­front to try and se­cure an equal­is­ing goal and went close on a cou­ple of oc­ca­sions but just couldn’t find the back of the net.

Tadhg went one on one with Rovers shot-stop­per Aaron Nolan in the 51st minute af­ter a mis­take at the back by the Rovers de­fence let in the speedy at­tacker but Nolan was quick out off his line to clear the ball. This was a warn­ing to the home side’s de­fence that the game was not over just yet.

Late in the sec­ond half, the Rovers men grabbed an­other goal to see out the game and se­cure their place in the fi­nal as Char­lie Phe­lan fired home the sec­ond of the game.

Phe­lan took a long-range ef­fort from out­side the penalty area which the keeper couldn’t keep out the shot, sub­sti­tute Ruairi Jenk­in­son made sure the ball went over the line as he headed the ball af­ter it crossed the line, but Phe­lan will be claim­ing the goal as it was an ex­cel­lent strike.

It was a tight af­fair with both sides us­ing their speed on the counter-at­tack to cre­ate chances for their for­wards but it was Wick­low Rovers who came out on top as they will be keep­ing an eye out for the other Jako Cup semi-fi­nal to see who they will face in the fi­nal. WICK­LOW ROVERS: 1. Aaron Nolan, 2. Eoin McEvoy, 3. Cian Leonard, 4. Cor­mac Wal­dron, 5. Peter Dunne, 6. Tom Phe­lan, 7. Adam Byrne, 8. Jack No­ble, 9. Aaron Mur­ray, 10. Ben Bowen, 11. Char­lie Phe­lan, 12. Ryan Mc Con­nell, 13. Harry Tobin-Kelly, 14. Ruairi Jenk­in­son.

ASH­FORD: 1. Fionn Doyle, 2. Aran Ca­vanagh, 3. Karl Drum­mond, 4. Cian Ryan, 5. Adam Daly, 6. Glen Con­nolly, 7. Luke Fitzpa­trick, 8. Sam Greene, 9. Adam Clack, 10. Tadhg Lovel, 14. Oisin Den­ver, 12. James Grant, 15. Allen Jose, 16. Sean Ryan. Ref­eree: C. O’Reilly

Adam Clark fires a shot on goal dur­ing the Un­der-14 Pre­mier Jako Cup semi-fi­nal.

Wick­low Rovers player Karl Drum­mond drives for­ward against Ash­ford Rovers.

Point blank save from ‘Rovers keeper Fionn Doyle.

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