Sidlesham knocked out holders Eastbourne Town Reserves 1-0 to reach the semi-finals of the Intermediate Cup. The scene was set for a great game by the two unbeaten teams in their respective leagues and it started at a furious pace with Sidlesham the quicker out of the blocks, with neat interplay down the flanks between Brad Derry, John Philips, Brad Miles and Andy Hounsome.
Two of the teams most consistent players, Andy Rawlins and James Brown, were left on the bench, but this gamble paid off.
Tom Bailey and Derry both had long-range efforts without success and the only goal came on 36 minutes when Derry fed Dan Bassil who drove to the by-line and beat the defender and squared the ball for Miles to fire home from ten yards.
The second half saw Eastbourne change formation, putting five across the middle and eventually three up front, but with resolute defending by star man Paul Grantham, Andy Carragher, Gary Jones and Ben Evans, they were unable to find a way through.
Sidlesham were happy to attack on the break and a superb volley into the corner by Bailey was ruled out for a dubious offside.
With ten minutes left Bassil was sent off for a second yellow, causing Sidlesham anxious moments. But bringing on Brown for Derry and Jay Whitmore for Bailey steadied the ship and Sidlesham held out for a well-deserved victory.
The Sidlesham management thanked all the players and supporters who made the trip.
SIDS: Keene, Grantham, Evans, Jones, Carragher, Derry, Miles, Philips, Hounsome, Bailey, Bassil, Whitmore, Rawlins, Brown, Whitehead, Low.
Lavant 3 Petworth 1
West Sussex League division one
Lavant continued their undefeated league record by beating Petworth at The Jungle.
The home side started with all guns blazing and were ahead within five minutes when Mike Bartley fed Stuart Loversidge, who put the division’s top scorer Ryan Seacombe through to fire home.
When Airy Wadey’s goal-kick was intercepted by Loversidge, the Lavant striker punished the error with a thunderbolt shot on 12 minutes.
Wadey saved Bartley’s penalty kick on 25 minutes after Seacombe was upended.
Though Paul Jefford hit the crossbar for the visitors, Lavant made it a 3-0 half-time lead when Seacombe fed Loversidge, who teed up James Brooks to score on 42 minutes.
The home side were instructed to shut up shop in the second half, which they did, and despite Rob Torode’s late 87th-minute goal for Petworth, the game never seemed in doubt.
On Saturday, Lavant entertain second-placed Holbrook in what could well be an early title decider.
LAVANT: Sanson; Coe, Purgavie, Wright,
Lyttle; Neville, Brooks, Stevens, Bartley; Seacombe, Loversidge. Subs: Gabb,