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15th South Shields Retains Title

Wednesday 25th April 2018

15th South Shields Company 5-a-side Seniors Football Team has retained its national title at the UK Finals held at the Valley Leisure Centre, Newtownabbey, Northern Ireland, on 14th April 2018.

The boys from Bethesda Free Church, Victoria Road, South Shields, qualified for the finals after winning the England finals in Derby in February. Having won the UK competition for the first time in their history a year ago, the team travelled to Belfast to defend their title

The other teams which reach reached the finals in Newtonabbey were: 1st Buckie and 6th/8th Dundee, representing Scotland;  7th Portadown and 1st Knocknamuckley, from Northern Irlenad; and 2nd Tonbridge, the other team from England.

Three wins, a draw, and one defeat in five matches saw the Company finish at the top of the group, but level on points with 2nd Tonbridge Company. A ‘winner takes all’ play-off game was then required to separate the two teams. Despite the team from Tonbridge putting up a brave fight, the South Shields players were not to be denied and ran out 2-0 winners.  Second-half goals from captain Jordan Brindle and Harry Edwardson sealing the result and sparking celebrations amongst the travelling supporters.

After the presentation of the trophy by Brigade Secretary Bill Stevenson, all the players attended a lunch hosted by the Mayor Paul Hamill, where they enjoyed some fellowship with the other Boys’ Brigade teams and staff.

Company Captain Alan Greener said:

“It was a great achievement in itself to qualify for the finals, but to actually travel to Belfast and come out on top against the best of Boys’ Brigade footballing talent in the UK is quite remarkable. Having tried for many years to win this competition until our first success of last year, we knew just how difficult a task it was going to be to retain the title.

“We would like to congratulate our fellow competitors, the referees, and all of those Boys’ Brigade Officers and Leaders who assisted in the organisation of the Finals.

“Our success coincides again with that of South Shields Football Club who have gained a third successive promotion themselves. If there’s to be another open-top bus parade in the town, then hopefully there may be some room on it for our boys too!"

Making up the winning team were; Jordan Brindle (17, Captain), Harry Edwardson (15), Samuel Ingamells (18), James Ingoe (18), Harry Ludlow (16), Michael O’Neil (18), all of whom had been part of the successful team in 2017.

Member of the winning team Harry Edwardson, 15, said:

“The final was a great experience for all of us who travelled to Northern Ireland and for those back home in South Shields waiting for the results after each match.

“We would like to thank our Officers and coaches, who were determined to help us retain the title for the second year running. Also, without the support and financial assistance from parents and friends we would not have been able to take part.

“As a player, I'm hoping that the younger boys coming through will be able to have the same experience in the future - as they’ve shown that they are more than capable of doing well."

Member of the winning team Harry Ludlow, 16, said:

“Winning the tournament made us all very proud, and was definitely a moment to remember for everyone who took part, and in the history of our own Company.”

 

You can find out more about national competitions here. 

 

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