Suffolk FA Senior Cup semi-final: Grundisburgh chief Mickey Squirrell wants players to gain revenge on Whitton United from 2012 defeat and get to Portman Road for legendary club president Bert Gundrill

Action from the 2012 Suffolk FA Senior Cup semi-final, where Whitton triumphed 1-0

Action from the 2012 Suffolk FA Senior Cup semi-final, where Whitton triumphed 1-0 - Credit: Archant

Ahead of his side’s Suffolk FA Senior Cup semi-final against Whitton United this weekend, Grundisburgh boss Mickey Squirrell has urged his players to win the game for long-standing club president Bert Grundrill and therefore advance into the final of the competition, held at Portman Road.

Grundrill is Grundisburgh through and through and has dedicated over 40 years of service to the club in a number of different roles including duties as a press officer, secretary and club president.

“I’ve known Bert since the first day I walked into the club’s doors,” explained manager Squirrell.

“He welcomed me through with open arms and I can’t speak highly enough of him. He’s in his mid-late 80’s now and although he looks remarkably well for his age you never know what’s around the corner.

“All the lads would like to get there for him again this season and make him as proud as ever.”

Grundrill has seen his side lift the prestigious trophy on six of the eight occasions since being part of the furniture at the Ipswich-based club.

And Squirrell himself has been part of that, achieving remarkable success in the competition having won it three times as a player and once as a manager with the club.

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Acknowledging his luck in playing at such a fine stadium in such a big competition on numerous occasions, Squirrell has also lost in the final of the competition three times as a player and once as a manager.

“I’ve been very fortunate to have all those opportunities,” confessed Squirrell.

“There have been and still are some very good players who have never played at Portman Road and I do feel really fortunate to have done so on many occasions.

“Grundisburgh’s pedigree in the competition is fantastic though and no other SIL club can boast that.”

To get the chance of adding to their trophy cabinet, Grundisburgh must defeat high-flying Thurlow Nunn First Division outfit Whitton United, who defeated Grundisburgh 1-0 in this stage of the competition two years ago.

“That result and performance was disappointing,” reflected Squirrell.

“It was a typical scrappy and nervous semi-final that was settled by a dubiously awarded penalty.

“There wasn’t a lot between the two teams and that’s normally the case with most semi-finals and finals.

“The odd goal often separates scores and the occasion often takes over.

“That might well be the case on Saturday, it will be frantic but I hope it’s a classic.”

Grundisburgh’s hopes for another Senior Cup title looked to be over earlier this season after they lost their last-16 tie to Needham Market reserves on penalties.

However, they were given a lifeline from the Suffolk FA when it appeared the Marketmen fielded an ineligible player in that game and as a result, Grundisburgh were reinstated back into the competition.

This was then followed by a quarter-final tie at Lakenheath which saw them arrive just 20 minutes before kick-off, only to go on and win 5-1!

Following such good fortune, maybe it’s Grundisburgh’s year in the competition again.

With both clubs situated near the top of their respective leagues and both holding a place in their League Cup semi-finals as well, come 4pm tomorrow, one of these sides’ treble aspirations will be over.

It promises to be a cracker and kick-off is at 2pm with Felixstowe & Walton United’s Goldstar Ground the chosen venue.

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