Top-to-bottom: lowdown on Under-18s cup final

Sussex County Girls Under-18 League Cup final: Crawley Wasps v Worthing Town, Culver Road, Lancing, May 1, 7.30pm

Action from Crawley Wasps v Hangleton Rangers U18 April 20 2014 Photo: Dave Burt

Crawley are assured of at least a championship play-off against Hangleton Rangers (Photo: Dave Burt)

Top v bottom – the team who have lost only three league games all season against the one who have won only three times.

The Sussex Under-18 cup final is a perfect example of David taking on Goliath.

And yet, as Sent Her Forward has reported more than once already this season, that’s absolutely no guarantee of where the trophy is heading. Continue reading

Chichester crown fine season with fourth win in a row

Abbey Shrubb and Kally Ambler with the Sussex Challenge Cup

Kally Ambler (right, seen with County Cup final goal hero Abbey Shrubb) has been in prolific form for Chichester

Chichester City ensured a top-four finish in the South West Combination League when they won their final match of the season 2-0 against long-time leaders Swindon Town.

First-half goals from the prolific Kally Ambler – her fifth in the last four matches – and Lucie Challen earned the Greens their fourth win in a row to take them up to second.

But with most of their rivals having several games still to play, their final placing is likely to be a little lower. Continue reading

Cardiff take advantage of Gillingham’s shock defeat

Round-up of Sunday’s action, including more title success, promotions and unfinished business

Aylesford Reserves celebrate their promotion from the Kent Division (Photo: Brian Embleton)

Aylesford Reserves clinched the Kent Division championship – and a potential promotion double for the club (Photo: Brian Embleton)

They may not be in the Super League, but Cardiff City’s players proved themselves superwomen after two magnificent wins in two days blew the Premier League title race wide open.

The club were forced to play twice in little more than 24 hours to make up a fixture backlog caused by a combination of the weather, cup commitments and international call-ups.

And they did the city proud, beating Tottenham Hotspur away 2-0 yesterday and Brighton & Hove Albion 3-0 at home this afternoon. Continue reading

Proud Pompey bow out of the cup – but earn new admirers

FAW Cup 6th round: Portsmouth 0-2 Notts County

Jess Clarke, playing for Notts County against Everton in the FAWSL (Photo: Notts County LFC)

Jess Clarke scored her fourth goal of the season to end Pompey’s cup hopes (Photo: Notts County LFC)

Portsmouth’s amazing FA Cup dream may be over, but not before they reminded all levels of the women’s game in England that while the Premier League may no longer be at the top of the women’s pyramid, it is still a force to be reckoned with.

Pompey were the only non-top-flight side in the quarter-finals, and for more than 70 minutes they held the Super League 1 leaders.

But two top-class goals by England internationals Sophie Bradley and Jess Clarke finally overcame their resistance and sent Notts County into the semi-finals, where they will play Everton. Continue reading

Herne Bay’s giant-killing juggernaut claims another victim

South East Counties Women’s League Cup final: Bexhill United 0-3 Herne Bay

Herne Bay captain Rachel Tracy lifts the cup with SECWL secretary Greg Petts

Herne Bay made it five trophies in two seasons after claiming the SECW League Cup

Underdogs Herne Bay clinched a trophy double for the second year in succession – and sent out a warning to the clubs they are set to face next season.

In only their second year in existence, Bay grabbed their fifth title Рand this one must have tasted particularly sweet as they beat the champions of the league above them. Continue reading

Sussex league title fights go to the wire

A look at the weekend matches as title, promotions and relegations are decided

After the excitement of last night’s Sussex Women’s League Cup final, the focus switches to league honours, with both the Women’s Division and Under-18 titles up for grabs.

Rottingdean Village, fresh from their cup triumph over Horsham Sparrows, need to win at home to Worthing Town to retain a chance of a league-and-cup double. Continue reading

Why I’ll miss Pompey’s greatest day

Gemma Hillier celebrates a goal against Lewes on April 9 2014 Photo: Jordan Hampton)

I’ll be missing the potential for this… (Photo: Jordan Hampton)

Portsmouth Ladies, my hometown women’s football club, play the biggest game in their history on Sunday when they take on Super League leaders Notts County at Gosport’s Privett Park.

The home FAW Cup quarter-final tie against a team packed full of internationals is a fitting reward for their memorable cup journey this season, which has seen them eliminate two fellow Premier League sides without conceding a goal, and then – after being given a scare by lower-league Crystal Palace in the fourth round – knock out Super League 2 side Durham.

For the superbly run club, its managerial duo Perry Northeast and Katie Poore, loyal director of football Vanessa Raynbird, and all the players and backroom staff, it’s a magnificent occasion that will live them for ever, whatever the outcome on the pitch. Continue reading

In-form Notts County pose Pompey toughest FA Cup test

FAW Cup 6th round: Portsmouth v Notts County, Privett Park, April 27 2014, 2pm

Notts County celebrate a goal against Everton in the FAWSL (Photo: Notts County LFC)

Notts County are top of the FAWSL on goal difference after beating Everton 2-0 (Photo: Notts County LFC)

If you’re going to march into history, you might as well take on the very best. And that’s what Portsmouth Ladies will be doing on Sunday when they host the current leaders of the Women’s Super League in the quarter-finals of the FAW Cup. Continue reading

Rottingdean give Brooks his ‘final’ reward

Sussex County Women’s League Cup final: Horsham Sparrows 1-2 Rottingdean Village

Action from Horsham Sparrows v Rottingdean Village, SCWGL Cup final April 24 2014Rottingdean Village came from behind to regain the League Cup in a fascinating game of contrasting styles.

Outplayed for much of the first half, the Women’s Division title hopefuls snatched an equaliser out of nothing just before half-time and capitalised on its impact to earn a narrow victory.

The result was a bit harsh on the aesthetically pleasing Sparrows, but as their manager, Neil Ansell, admitted: “We haven’t got the killer punch.” Continue reading

Doubles at stake in League Cup final

South East Counties Women’s League Cup final: Bexhill United v Herne Bay, Three Bridges, April 27 2014, 2pm

Bexhill United team that won the Premier Division championship on April 20 2014

Bexhill United clinched the league title last Sunday (Photo: Kate Wilde)

Two of the South East’s most successful grassroots women’s sides this season meet on Sunday to battle for a cup¬†that would give one of them a magnificent trophy double.

Bexhill United, who clinched the SECWL Premier Division championship last weekend, may start as favourites against Herne Bay, who are currently second in the division below – South East Division One. Continue reading