Ladies shoot for County Cup glory
Monday 09 April 2018 - by Stuart Smedley (Updated on 09 April 2018 at 19:57)
Royal Wootton Bassett Town Ladies aim to complete the first half of a potential league and cup double on Sunday when they take on Swindon Town Ladies Development in the Wiltshire County Women's Cup final.
The final takes place at Melksham Town's Oakfield Stadium, with kick off at 3pm.
In what promises to be an exciting, closely fought showpiece, Becky Gammon's side will need to see off their league rivals and fellow South West Women's Football League title challengers if they are to be crowned as the county knockout champions.
Both teams have shown excellent form in the earlier rounds, and it's clear that the two best teams in the competition are the last one standing.
Bassett's journey began with a lopsided 21-0 victory away from home against County League outfit The Market Lavington and Easterton United in which the goals were shared between nine players.
They were handed a tie against another County League opponent in the quarter finals, coming away with a 6-2 triumph against Laverstock and Ford thanks to Laura Gammon's hat trick, a Beth Westlake brace and a further strike from Hayley Huckin.
Reward for that win was a semi-final clash with league rivals Swindon Spitfires. And Bassett dealt with the step up in quality of the opposition in style, storming to a 7-0 win in which Huckin scored six times; Laura Jefferies was on hand to complete the scoring.
Swindon Development, meanwhile, took on fellow South West Women's League side FC Chippenham in the opening round and were dominant in an 8-1 win as Kathryn Bach scored four and Gipsy Viveash a hat-trick.
A home quarter final against Swindon Supermarine was then won 6-0 as Bach found the net three times to send them through to the semi finals where County League title favourites Trowbridge Town stood in their way.
While that proved a tougher test than their earlier two games, Swindon still prevailed 4-2 as Bach, Viveash, Helena Diaz-Butcher and Shaneez Mwaura all scored.
The two finalists are still yet to meet in the league, and Sunday's cup contest marks the first of three games against one another in the space of what will be a season-defining two and a half week span.
Based on their league records, there is very little to separate the teams.
Bassett currently head the table with thirteen wins, one draw and a single defeat – suffered on Sunday – to their name. Swindon sit five points behind in third, with a record of eleven wins, two draws and two defeats.
Both have been prolific in front of goal – Bassett scoring 56 to Swindon's 49 goals – and stingy in defence – through fifteen games they have each conceded only seventeen times – as well.
Something therefore has to give on Sunday.
And here's hoping it will be Bassett – roared on by a healthy contingent of Bassett support - to lift the cup for the first time, having finished as runners-up to Swindon Town's first team in the 2013-14 edition!