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Village Features

Double? No trouble!

Posted on May 30 2017 at 3:17:10

Team with trophy

Alvechurch FC’s victory in league and cup bodes well for next season.

Alvechurch FC’s superb season got even better as they achieved the league and cup double, becoming only the fourth club to do so at this level.

Having wrapped up the Midland Football League Premier Division, the Churchmen turned their attention to the Polymac Packaging League Cup final against Hinckley AFC – who were given an unexpected place in the final after original finalists St Andrews were found to have fielded an ineligible player in the semis.

The match, taking place at Walsall’s Bescot Stadium, was a thrilling encounter against a very good Hinckley side.

’Church thought they had taken the lead in only the 13th minute when a ball from Jamie Ashmore was headed goalbound by Josh March, only for Hinckley’s ’keeper Whitcombe to save brilliantly for a corner.

Alvechurch then had a strong penalty appeal turned down on 36 minutes after Daniel Dubidat appeared to be charged off the ball in the box, but the referee waved play on.

A slow start to the second half saw the first chance go Hinckley’s way when a free kick by Lee Butler went just over the bar, but it was ’Church who took the lead after 62 minutes when March headed home a cross.

They made it 2-0 just over 10 minutes later as March pounced to score his 34th of the season. ’Church should have sewn the game up on 77 minutes but somehow the ball stayed out after a chance at the near post.

With three minutes left on the clock, Hinckley brought it back to 2–1 to set up a nervous last few minutes for AFC – however, the boys in yellow held out for four minutes of injury time to do their dreamed-of double.

And by the time you read this, Alvechurch may even have done the treble if they are victorious against Wednesfield in the JW Hunt Cup final at Molineux.

’Church knocked out holders Sporting Khalsa in the semi after falling at this hurdle in the past two seasons – and it was a battle that went all the way to extra time.

With the scores level at 1–1, AFC sealed the win in the 118th minute with a spectacular strike from Reece Shilvock, who delivered a 20-yard drive into the top corner of the net.

* Alvechurch are already looking ahead to next season, now that the small matter of which league they will play in has been sorted out!

Being a Midlands club, they could have become either the most southerly team in the Northern Premier League or the most northerly in the League Southern – but it has now been confirmed that they will compete in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League’s 1st Division South, meaning less travelling and matches with somewhat more local teams.

Meanwhile, AFC’s manager Ian Long, assistant manager Richard Colwell and goalkeeping coach Chris Walwyn have all committed themselves to the club until 2019.

This is the first time ’Church have ever put their management team on contract but ambitious chairman Richard Thorndike, knowing there was interest from higher-level clubs, was keen to secure the services of this sought-after team.

’Church have also made their first signing of the close season: experienced centre-back Ashley Carter from Kidderminster Harriers.

* For more info or sponsorship enquiries, please contact Trevor Ball at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or visit

(Pre-season friendlies)
Sat July 15   Hereford Lads FC (A)
Sat July 22   Paget Rangers FC (A) 
Tues July 25   Stratford Town (H)

Above: The team finally get their hands on the league trophy. Photo/ Steve Evans

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