Southern Counties East League Challenge Cup 2018-19
Challenge Cup Final
Chatham Town 3-2 Corinthian
Longmead Stadium - Saturday 4th May
Chatham Town have won the SCEFL Challenge Cup after coming from behind to beat Corinthian 3-2 at the Longmead Stadium. The Hoops were two-up just before the break but goals from Paul Vines, Michael Hagan and Richard Avery saw the Chats complete the turnaround to get their hands on their second silverware of the season.
Chatham Town - Ellis, Grant, Parsons, Butler, Avery, Walters-Wright(Evans), Carnegie, Evans(Fitzgerald), Vines, Bodkin, Hagan (Pilbeam)
Corinthian - Prall, Holland, AJ Billings, J Billings, Healey, Bath, Gyeabour (Milton), McKinlay (Gilbert), Tanner, Housego, Johnson (Ita)
Corinthian had the wind in their favour in the first half and took advantage of that to dominate the proceedings in the first 45 minutes.
Kameron Gyeabour and Jai McKinlay each fired wide in the early stages as the Hoops looked for the opening goal. At the other end Matt Bodkin failed to get a sweet connection on a Michael Hagan cross and Paul Vines headed over following some good work from Danny Grant.
In the 23rd minute Corinthian took a deserved lead, although in slightly fortunate circumstances. Jamie Billings received the ball from the left, shot from 25 yards and was lucky to see it deflect off Corey Walters-Wright and go high over the diving Dan Ellis and in to the back of the net.
In the 38th minute. Corinthian doubled their lead. Some good build-up play on the right-hand side saw them break into the box where the ball was pulled back for Conor Johnson to fire home. 2-0 and a things were looking good for the Hoops.
Just before the break Chatham gave themselves a lifeline and it was that man Paul Vines that got it. After some good work on the left the ball was crossed to the far post area where Vines found some space and volleyed home. He had not only given his side a chance of a comeback, he had just earned himself the Golden Boot.
With Chatham now just one behind and having the wind advantage for the second half they started brightly and quickly got back on level terms. A long ball from back to front deceived everyone except Michael Hagan, who nipped in to poke past Aidan Prall in the Corinthian goal.
The game was now even but the Chats were shading the play and it was no surprise to see them take the lead to complete the comeback in the 73rd minute. After a bit of a goalmouth scramble, Marcus Evans saw his effort cleared off the line but it fell to Richard Avery who made no mistake to put his side ahead for the first time in the game. Harsh on Corinthian but the tide had turned and this goal was on the cards.
Vines tried to add to the total and Matt Bodkin came very close but had to look on as his 40 yard effort slid inches wide with the keeper stranded.
That was it for the action as the referee signalled for the end of the game. Chatham were now Champ Champs as this trophy would be sitting on the mantlepiece next to the Kent Senior Trophy won just 3 weeks earlier. Another runners-up position for Corinthian, who once again gave it their best efforts and almost got the job done. They will be back again next year, as will Chatham but for now the SCEFL season is done, but what a season it was.
All photos from the excellent Alan Coomes - Gallery coming soon...
Full Challenge Cup Results
Chatham Town 3-2 Corinthian
Semi Final Second Leg
Chatham Town 3-0 SC Thamesmead
Fisher 2-3 Corinthian - AET
Semi Final First Leg
SC Thamesmead 1-4 Chatham Town
Corinthian 0-0 Fisher
Erith Town 0-1 Fisher
Sheppey United 0-1 SC Thamesmead
Canterbury City 0-1 Chatham Town - AET
Cray Valley 2-3 Corinthian - AET
Glebe 2-3 Erith Town
SC Thamesmead 2-1 Beckenham Town
Chatham Town 4-2 Forest Hill Park (AET)
FC Elmstead 0-2 Sheppey United
Sutton Athletic 0-1 Canterbury City
Fisher 2-1 Snodland Town
Cray Valley PM 3-2 Lordswood (AET)
Deal Town 1-2 Corinthian (AET)
Lordswood 4-1 Greenways
Kent Football United 2-4 Sutton Athletic
Snodland Town 2-1 Rochester United
Stansfeld 1-5 Beckenham Town
Kennington 0-2 Sheppey United (AET)
Corinthian 2-1 AFC Croydon
Tunbridge Wells 1-5 Erith Town
FC Elmstead 3-1 Erith & Belvedere
Cray Valley 2-2 Holmesdale (Cray Valley win on Pens)
K Sports 0-1 Canterbury City
Welling Town 0-2 Glebe
Hollands & Blair 0-2 Chatham Town
SC Thamesmead 4-1 Meridian VP
Forest Hill Park 3-1 Bridon Ropes
Deal Town 3-1 Punjab United
Fisher 4-1 Rusthall
Lydd Town 0-4 Deal Town
Sheppey United 8-1 Bearsted
Phoenix Sports Reserves 1-3 Stansfeld
Lewisham Borough 1-2 Welling Town
Croydon 2-4 Fisher
Corinthian 6-0 Crowborough Athletic
Holders: Whitstable Town