Colney suffer penalty heartbreak

London Colney lost out 10-9 in an epic penalty shootout against Broxbourne Borough in the Challenge Trophy Final.

Challenge Trophy Final

Broxbourne Borough 0 London Colney 0 - AET

Broxbourne won 10-9 on penalties

LONDON Colney lost out in a dramatic penalty shootout in the Final of the Challenge Trophy.

It had come to down to the 10th kick for each side when Mark Paradise’s spot kick was saved by Obey Murefu giving Broxbourne the Trophy.

It was a bitter pill to swallow for the Blueboys who had been the better side in the previous 120 minutes of football.

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The pace of Dave Parkinson and tricky footwork of Frankie Jowle ensured Julian Robinson’s side had the upper hand.

Colney started like a steam train in the first half and could have taken an early lead.

Parkinson sped away from his man on the right wing, looked up and squared the ball to Russell Gallagher, but Colney’s left winger drilled his shot over the bar from 20 yards.

Broxbourne stopper Murefu, who was Bruce Grobelaar’s number two in the Zimbabwe national squad, proved to be a real thorn in Colney’s side all evening producing a string of fine saves.

The first came when he denied Blueboys’ skipper Kenny Hull after a clever set piece. Jowle took a quick free kick to Parkinson in the box, who flicked the ball to Hull but the right-back’s shot was stopped brilliantly by Murefu.

Not to be outdone, Colney stopper Mark Whittamore also produced a number of fine saves including a fine reflex stop to deny Murat Karagul after the Blueboys had failed to clear their lines.

It was a rare chance for the opposition as Colney dominated the first half.

Greg Shaw had a first time effort from distance stopped by Murefu and Parkinson fired wide after Jowle had played him in.

A slip by Paradise gifted Rob Tungett a sight of goal but Whittamore produced a good save to keep the effort out and at the other end Shaw was denied again when Murefu produced a great point blank save.

The came a moment of controversy. Parkinson chased a ball into the box and as he tried to go around Murefu, the Blueboys striker went down. Referee Liam Walshe pointed to the spot but after consulting his linesman changed his mind and awarded a goal kick much to the annoyance of the Blueboys.

Shaw continued to pepper the Broxbourne goal after the break but once more found Murefu in fine form but arguably the best save of the night came from Whittamore.

A cross from the left found Mark Brennan free in the box with the Broxbourne striker almost certain to score, that is until Whittamore leapt to his right and tipped the header over the bar.

Jowle’s skill saw him jink past two would-be tacklers and into the Broxbourne box but his effort came back off the outside of the post.

The midfielder nearly forced an own goal when his free kick was headed towards his own net by Ross Price but Murefu acrobatically tipped it over.

Broxbourne had the ball in the net in the 74th minute when Whittamore failed to deal with a long punt forward and Brennan had bundled the ball in but it was scrubbed out for a foul on Whittamore.

Both sides pushed but couldn’t find a goal ensuring another 30 minutes at least.

The first real chance of extra time fell to Gallagher but he headed Jowle’s cross straight at Murefu.

With both sides tiring in extra time real goalscoring chances were at a premium and it became inevitable that the game would go to penalties.

There were some impressive penalties from both sides, in particular Dave Corran’s effort, and with both sides converting their first nine penalties it seemed nothing could separate the two sides.

Broxbourne converted their 10th but Colney’s Paradise saw his effort kept out by Murefu sparking wild celebrations from Broxbourne.

Man of the Match: Tom Dickie

London Colney: Whittamore; Hull, Murphy, Paradise, Corran; Humbert, Dickie (Mitchell 120), Shaw (Simmonds 93); Jowle, Parkinson, Gallagher.

Subs not used: Danslow, Magwood, McCafferty.