Hakin United 4–2 Tenby
A HAT trick from Nicky Woodrow helped Hakin regain the Jubilee Cup as they beat Tenby in an entertaining clash at the Bridge Meadow.
Twice the Vikings were pegged back in the first half after taking the lead, but produced a dominant second half display that suggested they would again be the team to beat in this season’s race for the Division One title.
But in a game that saw six high quality goals, it was the Seasiders who set the tone inside the opening minute.
With his side’s first attack, striker Sam Christopher broke down the left wing and crossed low for Scott Ferney, who was denied by Hakin keeper James Manson at point blank range.
Tenby wasted another golden chance 10 minutes in when Leahy was also denied by Manson, and Daryl Mansbridge would have been relieved to have been flagged offside after putting the subsequent rebound over the bar.
And the Senior Cup holders were made to pay after 20 minutes, when Vikings skipper Ewan Findlay broke down the left and fed Woodrow, who curled a shot into the bottom corner from just inside the area.
Christopher and Justin Harding then both went close for their respective sides from long range, before Tenby levelled after 32 minutes.
Some great build up play culminated with Jordan Richards playing in Christopher, who turned smartly before firing home from 20 yards out.
But just two minutes later Hakin were back in front as Stanmore’s low cross was met by Justin Harding, who shot crisply past Tenby keeper Carl Woodhouse.
But The Seasiders finished the half strongly, and after Daryl Mansbridge headed an Owen Coombs corner wide, Joe Leahy ensured the teams went in 2-2 at the break when he found space on the edge of the area and scored with a powerful shot.
The second half began in the same vain as the first when Harding cushioned a header into Woodrow’s path, and the returning striker put Gary Dawes’ men back in front with a clinical half volley.
Harding himself should have extended the lead when Woodrow returned the favour, but blazed over with the goal at his mercy.
But on 62 minutes, Hakin did make it 4-2 when Woodrow completed his treble with another sublime strike, this time with his left foot, from 25 yards out.
The former Haverfordwest County player, who ironically was up against former Bluebirds teammate Jack Christopher in the Tenby defence, then should have had a fourth when Woodhouse blocked his close range effort, and although Woodrow did find the net in the ensuing goalmouth scramble, he was ruled offside.
Vikings sub Paul Thompson headed wide late on, before the Seasiders rallied with some late pressure, but Hakin closed out the final moments to secure the trophy for the first time since the beginning of the 2011/2012 campaign.
However, after the game Dawes rejected suggestions that the win would give his side an edge ahead of the new campaign.
“We’ve lost the last two Jubilee Cup games but gone on to win the league so that shows you can’t gage much from tonight,” he said.
“But it was a good run out for us, and we gave a few youngsters a go so all in all I’m happy.”
Dawes added the champions opening league game, at home to Merlins Bridge next Tuesday night, would provide a much sterner test.
Hakin United: James Manson, Steve Allen, Ewan Findlay (capt), Gareth Fawcett, Nathan Banner, Ben Aldred (Paul Thompson 65), Justin Harding, Jonathan Bennett (Dan Evans 74), Ashley Bevan, Nicky Woodrow (Ben Howells 74), James Stanmore.
Tenby: Carl Woodhouse, Owen Coombs (Johnny Goodrick 80), Sonny Phillips, Jack Christopher (capt), Richard Perry, Jordan Richards, Jerome Mansbridge, Daryl Mansbridge, Sam Christopher (Tom Baker 54), Joe Leahy, Scott Ferney (Jake Proctor 67).
Referee: Tom Bevan.
Assistants: Matthew Mercer and Gareth Elliott.