The Middlesex Intermediate Cup Final was played at Bedfont Sports FC on Saturday last 12th June, between Spartans Youth and Indian Gymkhana. Two well matched sides produced a closely fought encounter, played throughout in high temperatures beneath a virtually cloudless sky. Naturally, these conditions eventually had an impact on the players and slowed the tempo of play.
Davis Boateng saves from Gurpreet Singh Bansal
The opening exchanges were fairly even and chances were created at both ends of the pitch in the first 20 minutes. A long-range effort by Gymkhana’s Jayraj Jadeja hit the framework of the Spartans’ goal. Spartans’ Harry Stow skimmed the cross bar with a free kick after Henry Awokere’s run had been illegally ended on the edge of the penalty box. Gurpreet Singh Bansal brought a diving save from Davis Boateng, the Spartans’ keeper. Then Davis’s opposite number in the Gymkhana goal, Bilal Khan retrieved the situation for his side by leaving his line to thwart Mark Simuchimba, who had been released by a defensive error.
Bilal Khan saves from Mark Simuchimba
Mark Simuchimba had another good chance for Spartans but fired just wide of the post from around 20 yards. After this, the remainder of the first half belonged territorially to Indian Gymkhana, who tried in vain to break through the well marshalled Spartan defence, in which custodian, Davis Boateng was outstanding. Several promising moves were countered by either Davis or by his defenders.
Another diving save by Davis Boateng
Gymkhana defender, Jatinder Singh Liddar, breaking up the right provided the most danger to Spartans. Just before the interval, his low cross along the goal line failed to attract a touch and then he again worked his way into the box but fired over the bar.
Half time score: Spartans Youth 0 Indian Gymkhana 0
Indian Gymkhana resumed the attack after the interval. Jayraj Jadeja set up Parwinder Singh Kang but Davis Boateng saved low down. Jatinder continued his rampaging up the right wing and forced a corner from which Davis saved Jayraj’s well directed header.
Jermaine Morris (6) forces the ball home for Spartans' first goal
However. it was Spartan Youth that took the lead on the hour. A quick break out of defence down the left set up the chance for Jermaine Morris. Jermaine forced the ball home, despite the efforts of a defender, positioned on the goal line, who appeared to become tangled up with his goalkeeper.
Davis Boateng takes a high cross
Indian Gymkhana continued to keep the Spartan defence busy. However, keeper Davis Boateng continued to deal with everything that came his way, particularly impressing with his athleticism and his clean handling of high shots and crosses.
Davis Boateng diverts a dangerous ball to safety
Although much of the action still took place in the Spartan half, the latter had further scoring opportunities and Gymkhana’s keeper, Bilal Khan was often involved. Bilal did well to foil a break from Mark Simuchimba and then saved a close-range header from George Stow.
Kwame Mensah nets Spartans Youth's second goal
Spartans added a second goal during the 5 minutes of added time, when Kwame Mensah was left with the simple job of tapping a low cross home, after Gymkhana had lost possession and consequently found themselves outnumbered at the back.
Full time score: Spartans Youth 2 Indian Gymkhana 0
Spartans Youth with the cup
Referee Fernando Costache enjoyed a very good game. He was well supported by his Assistant Referees, Simon Cudner and Noel Glavin and Fourth Official, Satyam Toki.
The members of the organising committee were unanimous in choosing Spartans Youth goalkeeper, Davis Boateng as Player of the Match.
Our thanks are once more given to Bedfont Sports FC for the use of their excellent facilities and for the assistance given on the day. The all-ticket attendance was 221.
SPARTANS YOUTH FC
Davis Boateng, Deris Sesay, Simon Pandian, Sean Basaye, Ryan Braby, Jermaine Morris, Joseph Barnes, George Stow, Harry Stow, Mark Simuchimba and Henry Awokere.
Substitutes (rolling substitutions are used in this competition): Damien McCabe, Ayo Bakare, Kwame Mensah, Luke Beckwith and Teddy Ralph.
Manager: Mark Stow Assistant Manager: Anderson Cadogan Coach: Tony Finnigan.
INDIAN GYMKHANA FC
Bilal Khan, Jatinder Singh Liddar, Aashish Kharas, Kuljit Dhaliwal, Martin Benjamin, Odei Martin Sorondo, Jeyasiva Sivapathasundaram, Gurpreet Singh Bansal, Liam Walford, Jayraj Jadeja and Parwinder Singh Kang.
Substitutes: Harmeet Singh Dhaliwal, Manraj Singh Gill, Hammad Taj, Rohan Gupta and Tamim Sakha Alimi.
Managers: Guv Sandhu & Bob Dhaliwal Assistant Managers: Sam Sandhu & Sunil Sharma.
Our official photographer Chris Benn, as ever, has provided some fantastic imagery from the game. If using these photos please give credit.
Chris has selected 10 highlight images which can be found here.
Readers wishing to view the full gallery of images can find these here.