Wellington 1 Westfields 3
VETERAN Mark Hibbard scored twice in Westfields’ record-equalling 10th triumph in the HFA County Challenge Cup at Edgar Street.
Prolific marksman Daryl Addis clinched Westfields’ success with a 78th-minute strike to avenge their cup final defeat to Wellington two years ago.
Hibbard opened the scoring with a sixth-minute diving header and he doubled higher-graded Westfields’ advantage from the penalty spot in the 27th minute.
Hibbard almost completed his treble in first-half stoppage- time, but his looping header landed on the roof of the net.
“It was great to make that final step and get those regrets out of the way,” said ex-Hereford United youngster Hibbard, who had lost the last two finals with Westfields.
“Perhaps 3-1 flattered us a little bit but, after the last two years when we came up short on the day, we’re delighted.”
Wellington skipper Dale Withers had a mixed afternoon – he scored his side’s reply but was guilty of the foul on Daryl Addis for Westfields’ spot-kick.
“I didn’t think it was a penalty but the linesman gave it and that’s what you have to take in football,”
said central-defender Withers.
“Chasing a two-goal deficit killed the game and it’s always hard to come back.
We almost did it – we hit the bar – but it was too much on the day.”
Wellington goalkeeper Dan Tecza made two outstanding saves in an actionpacked first half.
Tecza clawed away Anthony Robbins’ 25-yard pile-drive and, seconds before the interval, he used his legs to block skipper Scott Jackson’s point-blank header.
Westfields’ goalkeeper Jamie Moore made a brilliant close-range parry from Matt Williams in the first half before the ball was scrambled to safety.
Westfields started brightly in the Bank Holiday Monday sunshine and deservedly took the lead.
Bobby Aldrich’s cross was flicked on by Jackson and Hibbard powered a diving header into the net.
Wellington’s Aaron Morgan limped off with a hamstring problem and they were dealt another blow soon afterwards when Westfields were awarded a soft penalty.
The assistant-referee ruled that Wellington skipper Withers had fouled Daryl Addis, who remained on his feet, and Hibbard made no mistake from the spot.
The villagers looked threatening through Paul Jones and Wayne McNeil and they reduced arrears in the 37th minute.
Will Perkins’ cross into the box was deflected into the air and Withers, with his back to goal, climbed high to head the ball past Moore.
The second half was a more subdued affair as both teams paid the price for the frenetic pace in the opening 45 minutes.
Wellington’s best chance of the second period fell to Matt Williams five minutes after the interval.
Jack Lewis’ clearance sent Williams racing down the left and he cut inside before curling a shot which clipped the bar.
Westfields created few chances but sealed their win with a third goal 12 minutes from time.
Sam Harrison robbed Ewan Rolfe on the edge of the Wellington box and his cross was calmly slotted home by Daryl Addis.
It was not long before Westfields’ victory celebrations started on the pitch and then in the away dressing room at Edgar Street.