Mellor Thirds Win The Whitehead Cup
Mellor Thirds lifted the Whitehead Cup on Tuesday, overcoming Chorltonians 1-0 in a thrilling final. Mellor played the better football in the first half. But after the break Chorlts began to dominate and put Mellor under enormous pressure for the final 25 minutes, without finding a breakthrough. On an excellent surface at Trafford FC's ground in Urmston, Mellor began brightly and the pace of Sam Parker and Steve Jackson and the link-up play of Dec McManus had Chorlts worried. Jerome Rouse, too, with surging runs and good vision caused Chorlts problems. An excellent pass from Parker on 15 minutes split the Chorlts defence and Jackson ran on in the inside right channel to hit a shot which struck the keeper's arm only to rebound kindly for the striker to stroke the ball home from 12 yards. On 20 minutes a neat turn gave a Chorlts forward a shooting opportunity but he blazed over. A minute later Terry Wilson, who had been impressive in midfield, had to be replaced by Ian Russell after suffering a hamstring injury. On 22 minutes Chorlts hit a post but although they forced several corners and bombarded the Mellor goalmouth with long throws and a number of free kicks, the light blue defenders were generally in command. After the break Chorlts began to see more of the ball as Mellor's good movement dissolved. Mellor began to look heavy legged in some departments and Parker and Jackson did not do enough to hold up the ball and relieve the pressure. On 60 minutes Chorlts worked a good position but the shot was straight at Ken Guest. On 75 minutes Guest made an excellent full length save to deny a Chorlts attacker. Then on 85 minutes manager Dunc Bray brought himself on in place of the tiring Rouse, who was suffering cramp. Referee Geoff Gregory, who had a fine match, played five minutes of injury time and Chorlts came close again a minute from time with a low shot which Guest smothered on his line. Finally the referee blew and Mellor had claimed their first silverware since Si Dalby's First Team lifted the Stockport Senior Cup. Rick Monton was named Man of the Match.
Mellor's Cup Final squad
Steve Jackson wheels away after scoring the vital goal
Skipper Si Meats (centre) lifts the cup, flanked by Dunc Bray, Matty Wyatt and Sam Parker