Guernsey Press

Vale Rec celebrate again after keeping hands on Stranger Cup

Two sides with long-established records in the Stranger Cup kept strictly to the script as the new Priaulx League champions overwhelmed their predecessors 4-0 at Blanche Pierre Lane on Friday night.

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Will Fazakerley raises his arm in celebration as he wheels away, leaving the Rovers defence downcast. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 33160588)

Vale Rec’s irresistible forward line of Louis Travis, Jacob Masterton-Pipet and Will Fazakerley destroyed a disjointed Rovers who offered virtually nothing all night.

Bar from a bright opening 10 minutes, but with not a chance made, Rovers were distinctly second-best for the remainder of the evening. And once Fazakerley’s delightful reverse pass had freed Masterton-Pipet for the opener, the Stranger Cup was only ever heading back to the familiarity of the Corbet Field trophy cabinet.

Meanwhile Rovers’ inability to ever get their hands on the trophy extends a further 12 months.

Soon after the goal former Rec junior Shay Goddard was denied a chance to level by a sliding block from Sam Le Huray but it was a rare nervous moment for Vale.

Rovers got lucky when Adam Bullock made a hash of collecting a cross and Colton Fletcher’s brave block was important in keeping the score at 1-0, but on 30 minutes Travis collected a bouncing through ball with his back to goal, outmuscled some weak defending and finished across Bullock for 2-0.

Jacob Masterton-Pipet drives forward with the ball for Vale Rec. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 33160584)

Christian Povall made his first genuine save from Charlie Platt on 41 minutes, though it was straight at him, and within 60 seconds at the other end Keanu Marsh got to the byline to cross to Masterton-Pipet at the back post. He got something on it, but the ball somehow ended up safely in Bullock’s arms.

The Rovers keeper was back in action immediately on the restart, blocking from Masterton-Pipet and then Travis, but on 51 minutes Seb Skillen crossed from the left and Fazakerly was there to head home.

Just before the hour Rovers’ best chance of the game was fashioned by Tyler McKane when he got the wrong side of Marsh, but his cross fell behind his strikers and Platt raced on to the ball only to blaze high and wide.

And then late on Masterton-Pipet got past substitute Louis Falla and as he headed towards the box, Fazakerley was lurking on the penalty spot and it was almost inevitable that the cross would find the big striker and that he would find the net.

The former GFC man took the Rex Bennet Memorial Trophy for the man of the match.

Mainly a super sub this season, he was involved for 90 minutes and though not always engaged, he was a brooding presence who consistently unsettled the Rovers back line and threatened whenever he was in the penalty box.