Cowfold FC are the 2012/13 West Sussex Football League Premier Division champions after dramatically securing the win they needed on the final day of the season.
A 2-1 home win over Hunston on Saturday completed the best season in the club’s 116 year history after a stunning end to the campaign which saw them win ten of their last 11 games.
And it was fitting that the goal which secured Cowfold the title came seven minutes from time from local lad and long-term club servant Phil Marshall to secure the club’s first ever Premiership crown.
The game itself was a tense affair with little good football played an not an enjoyable watch for Cowfold’s home fans.
And that was despite the hosts making the ideal start when, two minutes in Craig Deane played a great through ball to Nigel Smith and he slotted Cowfold in front.
The remainder of the half was largely poor, with the away side taking 35 minutes to register a shot on target, a weak effort which Beck comfortably saved, while Smith took too many touches when presented with the chance to double Fold’s lead before half time.
Kris Harding and Smith had half chances but otherwise neither side really looked a threat. The introduction of both Greg Brabon and then Marshall livened the hosts up, but on 79 minutes disaster struck when the referee awarded Hunston a dubious penalty which was expertly dispatched to make it 1-1.
Marshall and Smith went close before Cowfold got a break, the referee awarding a second, even more hotly disputed penalty, this time to the hosts. Smith stepped up to finish it, except he didn’t as the keeper made the save but the first man to arrive was Marshall who slotted in off the far post to hand Cowfold the win and with it the Premier Division title for the first time.
Fold: Beck, Easton, Pike, Tucker, Parsons L, Deane (c), Dalton (Derbyshire 84), Bellison (Brabon 66), Harding (Marshall 75), Wrigley, Smith. Unused sub Robinson