Cunningham: Odds against winning treble

WINNERS of the treble in 1997/98, Grundisburgh are searching for a repeat this campaign.But Kevin Cunningham, who is joint manager with Mickey Squirrell, says that they are now odds against to win the Metaltec SIL Senior Division title.

Elvin King

WINNERS of the treble in 1997/98, Grundisburgh are searching for a repeat this campaign.

But Kevin Cunningham, who is joint manager with Mickey Squirrell, says that they are now odds against to win the Metaltec SIL Senior Division title.

Grundisburgh have confirmed their place in the finals of the Suffolk Senior Cup and the SIL Omnico Cup playing Hadleigh United in the first and Woodbridge Athletic in the second.


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“We are confident of giving a good show in both finals,” said Cunningham. “But being six points behind joint leaders Melton St Audry's and Brantham Athletic in the league with five games left each makes it a tall order for us to retain the title.

“It would mean us winning all five games, and both St Audry's and Brantham losing two each.

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“One of them might perhaps slip-up, but I cannot see two.

“We will keep plugging away but it takes some doing to win a treble at any level.

“We only won four of our first eight league matches, and are now paying the price of our poor start.”

Grundisburgh are away to fifth-placed Capel Plough tomorrow, while both Brantham and St Audry's have easier looking games although Melton did come unstuck in their home fixture against Westerfield.

Cunningham wants to sit on the fence over who will win the race between the two sides ahead of his team. But he did say: “My pal Mark Manning is assistant manager at Brantham and he has experience of successful run-ins during his time with Grundisburgh.”

Grundisburgh could play their two finals inside three days if Ipswich Town fail to make the Coca-Cola Championship play-offs.

The final of the Senior Cup would then be on Thursday, May 8 - with the Omnico Cup final scheduled for Tuesday, May 6.

“That would be a tough ask,” added Cunningham, who says that his team will treat both finals with the same resolve.

“Woodbridge Athletic may be in the First Division of the SIL, but they are for all intents and purposes a senior side already.

“They will do well in senior football next season, and we will not be underestimating them.

“Ridgeons League Hadleigh are an excellent side and they will also present us with a tough nut to crack.”

Grundisburgh were beaten by Ridgeons League Stowmarket Town in last season's Senior Cup final, and Cunningham and Squirrell will be meeting up with an old buddy at Portman Road.

“Hadleigh manager Steve Jay was in the same Ipswich United side as myself and Micky when we lost to Sudbury Town Reserves in 1987,”said Cunningham.

Woodbridge Athletic will be promoted to the Senior Division if they gain a point at Thurston tomorrow.

Stonham Aspal A's 3-0 victory over Bacton Reserves has seen them promoted from Division Five, while Woolverstone Reserves have been promoted from Division Six after just one season in the SIL.

Needham Market A's 2-0 home defeat by Salvation Army has confirmed their relegation from Division Two.

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