More shootout drama in Norfolk Senior Cup as Fakenham beat Harleston to join King’s Lynn in the final
PUBLISHED: 23:15 15 March 2017 | UPDATED: 23:45 15 March 2017
Fakenham Town will face King’s Lynn Town at Carrow Road in this season’s Norfolk Senior Cup final, after beating Harleston on penalties, despite playing with 10 men for over an hour.
Big striker Joel Glover headed wide early on for Fakenham but Harleston grew into the game and right-back Oli Willis volleyed into the side-netting in the 14th minute, with Scott Roberts’ shot dropping onto the roof of the net 11 minutes later.
There was a yellow card apiece for heavy challenges, for George Abbott for Fakenham and Oli Willis for Harleston, either side of a shot from Sam Willis being deflected onto the roof of the Ghosts net in the 34th minute.
The Anglian Combination side did make the breakthrough though, when a Roberts corner was headed as far as the lively Nathan Russell at the back post, who rifled a low shot into the bottom-right corner for 1-0.
Harleston held on to their lead until the break as well but left-back Brendan Burke was thankful to keeper David Shannon for preventing his wayward header becoming an own goal late in the half.
Fakenham suffered a blow just eight minutes into the second half though when Abbott charged into another poor tackle and was shown his second yellow, swinging the tie even further in Harleston’s direction.
However, Fakenham responded to the setback and equalised through Ashley Jarvis, who turned home a Stuart Garner free-kick from the left to equalise in the 61st minute.
Neither team could find a late winner though and the game went to extra-time, where the teams still couldn’t be separated, sending the game to a shootout.
Nicky Howell bent a low shot just wide and hit the post for Harleston in the first half of extra-time and Fakenham thought they had won it in the second half, when substitute Kyle Plumb twice thought he had bundled over the line, but the officials were not convinced
Fakenham keeper Tom Rix was the hero in the shootout, superbly tipping Roberts’ effort on to the post and also denying Howell, to allow Matthew Gilchrist to score the crucial spot-kick and win the shootout 5-4.
Wayne Anderson’s side will face Lynn at Carrow Road on Monday, May 22 in the final, who also won on penalties the night before at the FDC, against Norwich United.
Fakenham: Rix; Gilchrist, Franks, Youngs, Stuart Garner; Sam Garner (Akers 92), Dye (Williams 80), Harvey (C), Abbott; Jarvis (Plumb 85), Garner. Unused subs: Dougal, Colman.
Harleston: Shannon; O Willis (Hitch 67), Howard, Furlong, Burke; S Willis, Page; Howell (C), Roberts, N Russell (Delaney 105); Blyth. Unused subs: Bliss, Passey, C Russell.
Referee: Nathan Walker
SHOOTOUT (Harleston went first)
• Furlong (scored), Plumb (scored) 1-1;
• Page (scored), Glover (scored) 2-2;
• Roberts (saved), Dye (scored) 2-3;
• Burke (scored), Youngs (scored) 3-4;
• Delaney (scored), Franks (missed) 4-4;
• Howell (saved), Gilchrist (scored) 4-5, Fakenham win.
Watch the shootout in full, as broadcast by Norfolk FA, in the video above.