Gallery: Ipswich Town Ladies defeat AFC Sudbury in Suffolk FA Women’s Cup final
- Credit: Sarah Lucy brown
Ipswich Town Ladies lifted the Suffolk FA Women’s Cup for the fifth time on Tuesday, after a 2-0 win over AFC Sudbury.
Goals in either half from Rox Small and Jazz Cox gave the Women’s Premier League South East side a comfortable victory against their Eastern Region Women’s Football League Division One North opponents.
The 2013 winners dominated for large parts of the game as last season’s champions failed to get a grip on proceedings in front of 287 spectators at Bury Town’s Ram Meadow ground.
Ipswich were camped in Sudbury’s half for the opening exchanges, capitalising on a lack of distance from Mollie Noble’s goal kicks.
Small almost nicked in at the near post after a right wing centre from Ellie Rossiter, before Amanda Crump hit a volley well wide as Ipswich tried to turn the screw.
AFC gradually got into the game though, gaining confidence in midfield areas and striker Enya Moore was a threat down the channels.
Moore had Sudbury’s first half-chance of the game, latching onto a through ball from Natalie Golding. However, under pressure from Lindsey Smith, her weak volley from the edge of the area was easily plucked out of the air by Laura Bird.
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Town almost took the lead in the 26th minute. Rossiter chased an intelligent flick from the head of Holly Hall and after winning a 50-50 battle with Noble, squared the ball into the penalty area.
There, Small was in a good position to run onto the ball but her shot towards goal was well blocked by the covering Charlotte Churchman.
Captain Danni Bitten was the next to go close for Ipswich, her shot from range after she had won a couple of tackles, being tipped around the post by Noble.
Town took the lead on 39 minutes when Bitten made a driving run from midfield and fed Crump, who beat the offside trap, down the right.
Crump was allowed to run into the box before rolling the ball to the back post where Small slid in and touched it home, almost on the goalline.
Crump tried to double her side’s lead before the half-time whistle, her speculative half-volley on the turn from distance, clearing the bar by a couple of yards.
Ipswich missed a golden opportunity to double their lead three minutes after the break. Rossiter played a low ball into the box but Small, who converted from a similar position in the first half, got her feet tangled up and saw her eventual stab towards goal blocked by Noble.
The ball spun out to left-back Lucy DuPlooy but she could only blaze her effort over the bar.
Town did double their lead on 57 minutes through substitute Cox. The forward charged down a clearance from Rebecca Thrower and lobbed the ball over the onrushing Noble, her effort trickling over the line.
Sudbury tried their best to get back into the game but Holly Harrison’s late volley from range, which was collected by Bird, was the nearest they came.
At the other end, Noble then pulled off a decent save to deny Cox a second goal and in doing so, provided the final highlight of the game.