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Women's Football News
Douglas Royal did not need reminding of the last time they played at the NSC - their Isle of Man Floodlit Cup Final defeat against their neighbours Corinthians.
Unbeaten in almost a year, on this occasion in this Group B match, there were to be no slip ups. After taking a first half lead, the Whites struck three times in seven minutes from the restart making this match over as a contest before finishing 5-1 winners.
Royals, however, didn't have it all their own way - Kim Carney continues to win rave reviews for the performances in midfield, cajoling and disrupting her opposite counterparts and she scored a consolation towards the end. Sadly, her efforts for the Tromode club on this occasion were in vain.
With both teams probing from the offset, Royal enjoyed more of the possession in the opposition half with Donna Shimmin having two attempts that were dealt with by goalkeeper Rose Ozga. However, the Royals' striker was lucky on the third occasion. Collecting a pass from deep and scampering along the left, Shimmin fired an oblique shot that went through Ozga's outstretched arms, struck the inside of the far post and hit the net.
With Royals continuingly pushing further forward and playing a high defensive line up, they were vulnerable to the counter attack and goalkeeper Kerri Williams rushed off her line, clearing the danger when Dawn Quinn was ready to pounce.
In the opposite goal, Ozga twice had to be alert, acrobatically tipping away testing efforts from Shimmin and Leanne Ashe on either side of the interval. From a resulting corner, Kym Hicklin was positioned at the near post to steer into the net and make it 2-0.
Three minutes later, the Whites clocked up their third, a move stemming on the right involving Breen and Ashe set up Shimmin who flicked it past Ozga and rolled home. Worse was to follow for Gymns when Bekki Cole's corner was met by the rushing Breen to net from close range.
An inert second half performance from Gymnasium then burst into life. Zoe Carney guided an effort past Williams, her sister had an empty staring at her but couldn't make an important connection, Zoe went close but her effort narrowly brushed past the upright. They did breach the Royals' rearguard when a well worked move outside the opposite penalty area saw Rachel Beckley set up Carney who fired the ball into the net.
Brian Cowin's side had the final say as Hicklin's pass from deep found Cole and, facing straight at the opposite goal, her shot was parried by Ozga but Breen followed up and made sure at the second attempt.
It would have been good news if you had Corinthians' Sarah O'Reilly (pictured) in a Fantasy Football Team! She was involved in all but the last goal in their 9-1 win over Laxey, despite the Whites fielding only nine players.
Burden opened the scoring after collecting O'Reilly's long pass from deep, Lawson's hesitancy allowed the striker to run into space and guide her effort into the net. A Leonie Roberts corner was only half cleared and O'Reilly dinked her effort into the top right for their second and following another corner that wasn't dealt with, O'Reilly swept into the bottom corner to make it 3-0. A pass from the Corinthians captain freed Sarah Kerford, embarking on a weaving run on the left bye line before she drilled home an angled drive and O'Reilly's cross shot was guided into the net by Kerry Lockwood for the fifth.
Straight the from kick off, O'Reilly's ball over the top put Burden to score the next, the same combination working for two more goals, collecting a crossfield pass to steer home and loop home a header.
However, Laxey did find the net when Lockwood's corner caused problems in the defence and following a bout of head tennis, Carol Kane chipped home her first goal for the club.
Corinthians completed a fruitful afternoon as Natalie Johnson's throw was latched onto by Kerford, whose diagonal drive across goal hit the far post, the rebound fell into the path of Alexis Teare to steer into her own net.
(Report by Paul Hatton)
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