You are here: Bermondsey \ Sport \ HURRICANE HAMLET RUN OUT OF STEAM IN FINAL
31 March 2011
Dulwich Hamlet 0 Wingate & Finchley 2
A whirlwind start from Hamlet in last nights Championship Manager Cup final was not enough for them to secure their first major trophy since 2004.
Backed by the lion’s share of a 470 strong crowd the Pink and Blues flew out of the blocks and dominated the first half hour of proceedings.
During this period Dulwich created enough opportunities to build a healthy lead but could not convert their dominance into goals, something that proved to be costly.
The first clear opportunity fell the way of centre back Lewis Gonsalves when a Junior Kadi corner was only half cleared. The errant clearance came to Asher Hudson on the edge of the box, and when his mishit shot fell to his fellow defender Gonsalves should have done better than allow Gavin King to pull off a save.
Dean Carpenter was next to push King to the limits when his bouncing effort forced the stopper to pull off a top save, although a clean strike may have left the Wingate keeper helpless.
When Gerry Gonnella was played though soon after and failed to beat King it seemed it would be a matter of time before Hamlet would score, but instead it proved to be their last meaningful chance of the night.
Wingate centre forward David Laird had already extended James Dunn to his fullest from a dead ball before he opened the scoring just before the break.
However Dunn was left exposed when the electric Leon Smith outran the Dulwich back line to pick up a through ball, and Smith was cute enough to square to Laird as Dunn advanced leaving the former to tap into an empty net.
While the half time deficit may have been harsh on Hamlet a rather listless second half display meant they rarely threatened the Wingate goal thereafter.
A last ditch Gonnella tackle stopped Wingate doubling their lead in the second period but the inevitable goal came with 25 minutes remaining.
Quick thinking from Josh Cooper saw him play a free-kick early that left the Hamlet back four scrambling to clear a subsequent centre, but eventually the ball fell to Ahmet Rifat to poke home and settle the contest.
Despite substitutions from Gavin Rose to shake up his team Hamlet had clearly ran out of steam by this point, and although Gonsalves and Gonnella came close to pulling a goal back near the end Dulwich eventually had to concede defeat on the night.
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