Defenders are key to superb cup tie victory

Burnley Rangers u14 1

Todmorden Borough u14 4

(Warburtons League Dolphin Cup1)

AFTER a shaky start to the season Boro have picked up some good results in the league and thoughts were now turned to a tricky away tie in Dolphin Cup against a side they had comfortably beaten in the league the previous week..

Borough started brightly but were repeatedly undone by the Rangers off-side trap. Goal scoring opportunities were being wasted by the bucketful as a result. The main culprit, forward Cormac Noel, had the pace to delay his run and remain on side. Borough continued to play good passing football with Matthew Ormerod at the centre of midfield constantly probing and looking for the killer pass to his two strikers, Noel and Jim Crowther.

Rasmus Knudsen was commanding with James Lively on the left wing and Ryan Green on the right wing.

At the back the central defensive partnership of Joseph Pryce and Cameron Hanson dealt with any trouble, full backs Chris Carpenter and skipper Josh Krogulski working tirelessly up and down the flanks, supporting the attack. Early on Borough keeper Adam Wilinsky was a virtual spectator.

The breakthrough finally came as a result of an in-swinging corner from Noel which caused panic in the Rangers defence.

The ball broke loose to Ormerod on the edge of the box who then rifled the ball into the net with his left foot. Crowther made it two with a well taken goal soon after.

New signing Jordan Mirza came on as a sub along with Isaac Pearson, James Leah and Braddock Eames during the second half, but it was Mirza who was involved with keeper Wilinsky which resulted in a bizarre own goal.

Those offside decisions came back to haunt Borough as Rangers started to believe that they could get back into the match. Wilinsky pulled off a couple of superb saves to deny the home team an equaliser and soon afterwards another corner resulted in more panic in the Rangers defence and an own goal.

1-3 quickly became 1-4 when a superb move between Eames and Noel left Eames to race through unchecked to score.

In the end it was a comfortable win but just for a moment the Borough defence had to work hard for the mistakes made by the forwards.

Todmorden Sports Centre u11 6

Beacon Rangers u11 3

THIS was a more closely fought match than the final score line suggests. It was 3-3 with only nine minutes to go.

Todmorden opened their account in the second minute through midfielder Josh Frewin, when his powerful shot rebounded back to him off a visiting defender and bounced straight into the goal.

Daniel Taylor, in fired-up mood, made it 2-0 ten minutes later, but just before half-time Beacon Rangers’ number 7 put away their first goal. It was, as one spectator commented, “end-to-end stuff”.

As if to confirm this, the away team ran in their second goal two minutes after the break, and twelve minutes later TSC conceded a third.

Harry Ashworth, though, brought the teams level again one minute later, and then Joe Hollis jinked his way down the left and crossed to Aaron Scott, who made it 4-3.

Four minutes later, Hollis, with only the goalie to beat, was deliberately fouled just outside the penalty area, allowing Ashworth to deliver one of his trademark lofted drives: 5-3.

In the last five minutes TSC began to play the passing game that had eluded them for several weeks, with their final movement ending in a lovely left-footed shot from Scott.

Player of the week was defender Sam Bragg, with Sol Cotton and goalie Cameron Wilcock also collecting certificates for excellent performances.

Elland u7 0

Todmorden Sports Centre u7 1

THIS closely fought fixture was heading for a stalemate until a late George Wilson free-kick finally crushed Elland’s stubborn resistance.

In truth, Todmorden were the stronger side.

Throughout the first period they were virtually camped in the Elland half of the pitch, but despite this dominance, they did not create any clear-cut opportunities.

The closest they came was when Ben Cook slid in but failed to get on the end of a fierce cross from Wilson.

After the break, it became clear that Elland’s confidence was growing, and although Tod were still the stronger side, a series of dangerous breaks suggested the very real possibility that Elland might even nick the game – particularly as time was running out.

This prospect was most dramatically demonstrated when a desperate combination of Wilson and Oisin Pritchard managed to scramble the ball off the line with keeper Lewis Journeaux stranded.

It was classic end-to-end stuff. In almost the next breath, Tod charged forward and Wilson was hacked down outside the Elland area.

He blasted the free-kick and although the goalkeeper got his fingertips to the ball it was an unstoppable shot, nestling into the back of the net. It was no more than Tod deserved.

Joel Deakin, Leon Borrill, Barney Sheehan, Jordan Rothwell and Jude Spensley also all made a vital contribution to this commendable victory.

Todmorden Boro u12 12

Halifax Irish u12 3

A WELL deserved victory was on the cards for Todmorden Borough as they trounced Halifax Irish 12-3 on home turf on Sunday.

They were in superb goalscoring form with Nathan Dennett, Freddie Priestley, Joe Gale and George Hatton all on target.

New strategies from manager Johnny Brown proved vital and showed in some brilliant defending from Harry Dunne, Jack Dempsey Liam Williamson and Reece Stansfield.

Halifax Irish played a good game to the end but only found a way past goalkeeper Jamie Wrench on three occasions while the strikers were running up a dozen goals at the other end.

This was an excellent team effort, with man of the match award going to Harry Dunne for his outstanding performance in defence.

Colne FC u150

Todmorden FC u151

TODMORDEN travelled to Colne hoping to keep their 100 per cent league record intact against a side who themselves have only lost once.

The game was played in freezing, windy conditions on a bumping, sloping pitch which would have been better than skateboarding than football and Colne opened the brighter, the ball crashing off the bar inn their opening attack and Tod goalkeeper Heselwood making a good diving save to collect the loose ball.

Greg Dickens for Tod saw a long range effort well saved and Jack Dungworth created a good chance for himself, beating three players before firing wide as the first half ended goalless.

Good passing play, Tod’s trademark this season, saw Scott Wrench start and finish the move that put Todmorden 1-0 up.

Colne pressure saw long balls punted into Todmorden’s penalty area but strong tackling and goalkeeping saw them hang on for the win.

Both teams deserve credit for competing for the full match in poor conditions and on a poor playing surface.

Men of the match for Todmorden were Adam Harrow and Leon Heselwood, who both had a spell in goal and performed brilliantly to keep the clean sheet.

Halifax Irish Greens u11 6

Todmorden Borough u11 0

BORO faced their sternest test so far against league leaders Irish Greens and responded with a performance that was far better than even the final scoreline would suggest.

The home side were frustrated as Boro’s midfield — Evan Jarman, Thomas Heys, Alex Werth and Jonathan Fitzgerald — showed aggression and resilience to support defenders Thomas Suthers, George Hodkinson, Ryan Lewis and Jacob Dobson.

This resulted in a very tight first half, which ended with Boro feeling a little unfortunate to be one down.

Forwards Tommy Few and debutant Jake Barnes worked tirelessly even though few opportunities came their way.

The two Irish strikers in particular were a constant threat with electric pace and good movement, but even when Boro conceded a second they still had the belief that they could get something from the game.

A few precious chances went begging, but in the final 10 minutes a combination of tired legs and some clinical Irish finishing put Boro to the sword. Louis Lupton made a late appearance in place of Tommy Few.

Boro continue to improve however and for most of the game they competed strongly with opposition of a very high quality. Thomas Heys was man of the match but all players gave 100 per cent and Joe Battersby made some excellent saves at crucial times.

Hebden Bridge Saints u9 2

Todmorden Sports Centre u9 7

IN a repeat of last seasons cup final TSC travelled to play Hebden Bridge Saints.

With TSC winning every game by just a single goal in the past against Saints another tight game was expected. To that end TSC flew out of the blocks passing with confidence and no shortage of flair creating many scoring opportunities.

The first of these was taken by left winger Alec Hodkinson and with this attacking style of football the chances continued and were duly put away by Henry Antemes (2), Benjamin Pearson and Hodkinson completing his brace to make it 5-0 at half time.

The second half started with TSC looking comfortable on the ball and although not passing as well in the first half they were well in control of the game with the defensive trio of Jack Denton, Thomas Stansfield and Chris Reeder standing firm at the back, and further goals added from Josh Dyer and a rare headed goal from Benjamin Pearson made it 7 goals to TSC with Saints just collecting a couple of late consolation goals.

If TSC continue to play in this vein they will be a match for anybody.

TSC played a shorter game afterwards TSC winning 11-0 with Jack Denton scoring a couple of goals to earn bragging rights at school and round off a very good morning’s football.