Lifton 0 Holsworthy Reserves 1

SCOTT BINGHAM’S early goal was enough as Holsworthy Reserves won the Launceston Cup with a narrow victory over Lifton at Pennygillam.

The North Devon League Premier Division side showed slightly more quality throughout, but Lifton, promoted from Division Two East of the St Piran League this year, had plenty of chances, particularly towards the end of the first half.

A crowd of over 270, the highest in over 20 years packed into the ground which was bathed in sunshine.

A cup final needs an early goal and it arrived with the first real chance on seven minutes.

A ball in from the right found Rob Pearce whose shot was blocked, but midfielder Scott Bingham was on hand to fire home from eight yards.

Lifton have scored plenty of goals this year and were nearly level five minutes later.

Promising winger Isaac Parnell drove down the left and benefitted from a ricochet, but goalkeeper Dean Chidley was out quickly to deny him from eight yards.

Holsworthy had started the brighter, but Lifton grew into the game with a header from … going straight at Chidley.

Chidley had to get down smartly at his near post to deny Parnell on 37 minutes, and that started a spell of dominance for Barry Rutherford’s men.

Within 60 seconds, the impressive Leon Trudgeon drove down the right side of the box before Chidley comfortably saved.

Defensive midfielder Nathan Farrer had a fine game, but he could only head over a Ralph Finnimore free-kick.

Then, on 44 minutes, a fine move down the left ended with striker Dave Sharpe sending in a cross that the onrushing Parnell headed narrowly over.

Holsworthy introduced striker Dom Abbott in place of Joel Greening at the break while Lifton brought on Blair Vanstone, Josh Mayne and Andy Penn.

Abbott should have done better within 40 seconds of the restart as he dragged his effort wide, while ten minute later, Farrer headed a free-kick over.

Lifton were slightly fortunate not to give away a penalty on 58 minutes as Scott Bingham was clattered after flicking on a throw-in, but referee Adrian Clements judged that he had pushed the defender first.

Abbott caused the Lifton defence plenty of problems, and on 69 minutes could only drag another effort wide.

Both teams utilised their bench in the final 15 minutes as the sun continued to beat down, but chances were at a premium.

Lifton were finding it tough work to break down a Magpies defence well led by skipper Ryan Tape at centre-half, although they brought back on centre-half Dan Hoare, striker Dave Sharpe and midfielder Ralph Finnimore in the final ten minutes.

Holsworthy had a decent chance ten minutes from time as Lifton keeper Chris Hoare dropped a high ball, however he redeemed himself by blocking Rob Pearce’s drive from the left side of the box with his legs.

Lifton huffed and puffed in the latter stages, but Chidley had nothing of note to do as the cup headed back up the A388.

LIFTON: Chris Hoare; Sam Eaton (capt), Daniel Hoare, Bradley Mitchell, Sean Tucker; Ralph Finnimore, Nathan Farrer, Leon Trudgeon; Dan Altaan, Dave Sharpe, Isaac Parnell. Subs: Blair Vanstone, Andy Penn, Josh Mayne, Will Finnimore, Alex Gregory.

HOLSWORTHY: Dean Chidley; Brendan Hearn, Ryan Tape (capt), Callum Martyn, Kieran Jollow; Scott Bingham, Rob Pearce, Aidan Davis; Jago Barriball, Joel Greening, Tai Wonnacott. Subs: Tom Denford, Dom Abbott, Charlie Bingham, Bruno Bundey, Elijah Acton.

Lifton man of the match: Nathan Farrer; Holsworthy man of the match: Ryan Tape.