Scorers :  Barry Mason 88 (pen)  /  Nathan Paxton 52, Harry Potter 62

Date : Wednesday 25th February 2015 - 7:45pm kick off - Russell-Cotes Cup Quarter Final

Sholing : Rory Anderson, Kevin Brewster, Liam Golding (Marv McLean 59), Pete Castle (Mike Byrne 33), TJ Cuthbertson, Jack Smith (Jess Walklin 46), Barry Mason, Alex Sawyer, Dan Mason, Byron Mason [c], Nick Watts.  Subs not used : Matt Brown, Tobi Adekunle.

Yellow Card : 

Horndean : Lyall Beazley [c], Jack McFarlane, Tony Worsfold, Jack Warren, Nathan Kirby, Dan Ayres, Gary Austin, Gavin Spurway (Mitch Frost 81), Harry Potter (Matt Andrews 68), Lewis Stockford, Nathan Paxton. Subs not used : Louis Bell, Adam Turner, Derek Harding

Yellow Card :  Gary Austin 88

Attendance : 76

Man of the Match :  Alex Sawyer

Referee :  Tony Foster.   Assistants: Rob Ablitt & George Kimber-Sweatman

Sholing crashed out of the Russell Cotes Cup to midtable Wessex League side, Horndean, who deserved the victory.

Rory Anderson took over the goalkeepers gloves from Matt Brown.  With Dan Miller away at University, TJ partnered Pete Castle in the centre of defence.  Barry Mason & Nick Watts returned to the starting line-up.

Game got underway at a frantic pace with Sholing on top and the Horndean defence looking a little shaky.  However, it wasn't until the 13th minute that we had our first serious effort on goal and it came when a dropping ball on the edge of the area was hooked goalwards by Alex Sawyer, but comfortably saved.  The longer the half went on the more you could see Horndean growing into the game.  Sholing needed an early goal or two, but despite a lot of effort, there was little to worry the Horndean keeper.  There was a blow to the Boatmen on the half hour as Pete Castle pulled up when trying to retrieve a loose ball from a corner.  He went straight off to be replaced by Mike Byrne.  Horndean had a half chance but a shot was pulled across the face of goal when they had two players waiting for a tap-in.  HT 0-0

Jack Smith couldn't continue for the re-start, so he was replaced by Jess Walklin in midfield.  The game continued at a high tempo with hardly any stoppages.  The ref was letting everything go... and I mean EVERYTHING.  No one likes a fussy stop-start refereee, but this was the other extreme.  With no fouls being given, the tackles got stronger & stronger, with Sholing in particular getting frustrated.  Sholing finally carved out a good opportunity when a scramble in the box saw the ball land at the feet of Byron Mason, but his effort was deflected up and somehow tipped onto the post by the keeper.  Liam Golding was the end of crunching challenge that left him limping and Horndean took advantage, getting to the byline and pulling back a cross for Paxton to knock in from close range.

Boatmen almost equalised straight afterwards, Barry Mason smacked an effort like a rocket from the edge of the area, but Beazley in the Horndean goal pulled off a brilliant save to push it over the bar.  Liam Golding had to go off with an injury and Marv McLean went on in his place.  Horndean then doubled their advantage from a goal gifted to them by the Sholing defence.  A long ball towards the wing wasn't dealt with and sliced back into the middle, allowing Harry Potter to sieze upon it, round Rory Anderson and tap into the empty goal.  (I'm sure at this point in most match reports where Potter has scored, people look for a witty reference to the Book/Film character, but quite frankly, I can't be arsed to).

Horndean probably couldn't believe their luck, but to be fair, they were playing better than the home side and deserved the lead.  if Sholing were thinking Horndean might tire in the last 20 minutes, they were wrong, as it was the Boatmen who were hitting misplaced passes and were running through treacle and were continued to be frustrated by ref not giving any fouls in our favour (or for the opposition either).  He finally did make a decision when Dan Mason chested down a pass and was bundled over from behind by the defender.  To everyone's amazement, the ref blew his whistle (didn't know he had one) and pointed to the spot.  BARRY MASON fired the ball into the corner, but there was only a minute to go and the Horndean keeper had the last word by clutching a flick by Dan Mason down by his goalline. FT 1-2

As well as losing in a Cup that we targetted to win, after the game, Sholing were dealt further blows when it emerged the injuries suffered would lead to players missing some games.  Pete Castle pulled a Quad muscle.  Liam Golding has ankle ligament damage.  Jack Smith aggravated a knee injury he's been carrying.  Nick Watts suffered heavy bruising on a foot.

Next Game is a trip to second in the table, Taunton Town, on Saturday