Somerset Senior Cup 4th Round
Uphill Castle 3, Minehead 2

IN a hugely entertaining Somerset Senior Cup 4th Round tie, these two committed sides were separated by an injury-time home winner.

Though they had already completed the league double over their opponents, the Blues knew they had a mountain to climb as suspensions, unavailability and injuries meant they were short of six regulars.

And with three of their bare XI players carrying injuries that would normally stop them from playing, progressing to the next round was always going to be a big ask.

The visitors started very brightly and, after forcing two early corners, Harry Scatchard’s volley went just wide.

Callum Barnfield’s 30-yard effort came back off the crossbar, as the Blues took the game to their hosts.

Guy Burns was causing the home defence problems, and his goal-bound shot following a corner was blocked.

Stefan Phillips who, like Burns, was making his first appearance since September, was linking play well, and Minehead looked a strong attacking force.

However, it was the home side who took the lead on the half-hour, with virtually their first venture into the Minehead penalty area when a poor clearance off a slick through ball from midfield gave Jack Askins the opportunity to show the defence a clean pair of heels, and he shot convincingly home past Sam Tarr.

Early in the second half, it was Burns who levelled the scores from a free-kick which deceived the defensive wall and beat the keeper at the near post.

However, two minutes later, Askins headed home unmarked from a well-taken corner to restore the home lead.

Though the Castle had chances during the second half, it was Minehead who looked more like scoring and, after a superb incisive move was finished by a fine shot from Harry Scatchard, the Blues were back on level terms.

Peppering the home goal during the remainder of the second half, an unlikely away win was looking on the cards, but wayward shots from normally reliably accurate players made extra time in the failing light seem highly probable.

Home keeper Luke Bryant also played a big part in keeping the visitors at bay but, after two strong penalty appeals fell on deaf ears, it was substitute Sam Berresford who broke away effectively during time added on, and slotted home past the exposed Sam Tarr from all of 40 yards, to give the home side a place in the last eight.

Minehead: Sam Tarr, Matty Ronan, Matt Cracknell, Mike Mullen, Chris Newbold, Stefan Phillips, Harry Scatchard, Luke Howells, Robert Vickers, Guy Burns, Callum Barnfield.

  • ON Saturday, Minehead travel to Highbridge Town for the first ever senior game between the two clubs.