Keighley FA Sunday Cup final: Bradford Phoenix 7 Crossflatts Village 2

PHOENIX came from a goal behind to trounce Crossflatts at Silsden’s Cobbydale Construction Stadium to lift the Keighley FA Sunday Cup – and gain revenge for a 2-1 defeat in last year’s final.

Flatts – whose boss Kevin Gill revealed are leaving the Wharfedale Triangle to join the Bradford Sunday Alliance next season – seemed to be on their way to retaining the trophy when they went 1-0 up after 11 minutes through talisman Michael Garnett.

But their Sunday Alliance Premier Division opponents put their foot on the gas and equalised moments later, Ashley Warrington finding the back of the net.

Phoenix took the lead midway through the first half when Andy McHugh got on the scoresheet, and then the impressive Brad Holland’s 18-yard effort gave Village keeper Dom Bennett no chance to make it 3-1.

Phoenix went 4-1 up early in the second half when Ryan Hudson caused havoc in the Village back line and smashed home.

Flatts appeared to get back into game when they pulled it back to 4-2 thanks to a Colin Schofield strike, but Holland's second goal after 60 minutes dashed those hopes.

Hudson scored his second moments later, with McHugh this time turning provider. Phoenix completed the scoring late on from the spot after Holland was fouled, with Andy Corker making no mistake from the spot.

Village boss Gill was disappointed but also very reflective after his first season in charge at the club. He said: “It was a day to forget for us. Our supporters turned out in numbers and did us proud. My players didn’t perform as they have done all season, but I hope we showed dignity in defeat. All credit goes to Bradford Phoenix who on the day were the far better side.

"We are now looking forward to pitting our wits in the Bradford Sunday Alliance League next season after deciding to leave the Wharfedale Triangle League.

"We are proud of what we achieved this season – just missing out on the title, getting to the semi-finals of the League Cup and getting to the final of the Keighley Sunday Cup.

"I am immensely proud of all of the lads. Their effort and commitment has been exemplary. This has been my first season in charge and I have enjoyed every minute of it. I have made mistakes but I will put them right next season.”

Phoenix boss Andrew Tomlinson was understandably in buoyant mood. He said: “I am very proud of what the players and management staff have achieved this season.

"After ten years of being runners-up and coming second in all our promotions up to the Premier Division (of the Bradford Sunday Alliance), it never looked like we get our hands on a trophy.

"But I told my players when we got promoted to the top flight that our target was to stay up and win this cup, and we have done that.

"I would like to thank all my players for the hard work that they have put into winning this trophy, and I would also like to thank Crossflatts players, staff and fans for their professional attitude in defeat. They are a credit to the sport.

"I would also like to thank the Crossflatts lads for filling the trophy up with lager for us! It was a fabulous touch and something we will adopt in the future.”