Havant cruise into Hampshire Cup final

Goalscorers 'Ollie Nail, left, and James Speke. 'Picture: Mick Young
Goalscorers 'Ollie Nail, left, and James Speke. 'Picture: Mick Young
  • Havant will play Trojans in the final on May 4
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Havant captain Raj Laly hopes to lead his side to back-to-back Hampshire Cup titles after they sealed their place in the final on Saturday.

The South League premier division one side cruised into the final of the competition for the fourth time in five years.

Havant secured their place following comfortable wins over Wimborne Wayfarers and Bournemouth in the quarter-final and semi-final respectively.

They beat Hampshire regional division two side Wimborne 5-0 and then Bournemouth, who play in the division above, 6-1 in what was a busy afternoon.

‘It was a good weekend for us,’ said Laly.

‘In the last couple of seasons we’ve prioritised the Hampshire Cup, we want to win some silverware.

We won it last year so it would be really good to win it two years in a row

Raj Laly

’We won it last year so it would be really good to win it two years in a row.

‘We were expected to get through to the final.

‘The opposition we were playing are below us but sometimes that can be quite tricky because all their focus is on that match.’

It was a much-changed Havant side, who were missing all their internationals, as well as several first-team players who were attending Jonathan Pickett’s stag do.

Under-16 player Tomek Bruml again made the step up to the first team and did well at right-half.

Goalscorers on the day included former Great Britain international Adrian Wilkinson.

And Laly was impressed with Wilkinson’s contribution.

‘Adrian used to be an ex-Great Britain player about 10 years ago and he really showed his class at the weekend,’ he said.

‘It was a good example of what he can do, you never lose that.

‘He scored in both matches and beat two or three players before slotting in his goals.

‘He normally plays for the seconds but he came in and played really well for us.’

Ollie Nail and James Speke were also among the goalscorers in the two comfortable victories.

The only down side was that coach Ady Adams was unable to see his team reach the final because he was ill.

Havant will now play Trojans on Hampshire finals day at Haslemere Hockey Club on May 4.

In recent years, the battle for county honours has always been between Havant and Fareham.

The Barncroft Way side are the defending champions after they saw off their rivals to take the crown last year.

However, things will be different this time round, as the Henry Cort outfit suffered a shock semi-final defeat to Southampton-based Trojans.

Laly is now relishing the prospect of playing a different side in the final.

He added: ‘It will be good to play a different side.

‘We played Trojans last year in the semi-finals and won 3-1 on penalties and we’ve played them in a friendly this season.

‘It will be a different type of final.

‘We’re probably expected to win but it’s not going to be easy.

‘Trojans are an up-and-coming side and are doing well.

‘It will be an energetic game so we’re not going to take it easy in the next couple of weeks, we’ve still got training sessions.’

Meanwhile, Havant’s second string are in the final of the Hampshire Open League Cup.