Whitnash show plenty of grit to overcome Griff

Whitnash Town skipper Lee Scott lifts the cup with son Mason.
Whitnash Town skipper Lee Scott lifts the cup with son Mason.

Whitnash Town boss Tony Clarke was a proud man after seeing his side lift the Coventry Telegraph Cup courtesy of a 1-0 win over Nuneaton Griff at the Ricoh Arena.

The 125th final was settled by a 39th-minute James Footman header and Clarke was full of praise for the workrate of his Coventry Alliance side who more than matched their Midland League rivals.

“It was a great night from start to finish,” said Clarke.

“The lads left everything out on the pitch and thoroughly deserved to win the cup.

“It was a very proud moment for me to see the lads lift the cup and get their rewards after a long, hard season.”

With Coventry United defender Jamie Coleman brought into to bolster their ranks, Whitnash were content to defend in depth and try and catch Griff on the counter.

They were the first to work the keeper, with Craig Watkin forcing Griff keeper George Woodward into a save with his legs before Paul Wilkinson fired wide in the 21st minute.

Ryan Millerchip drew a save out of Whitnash keeper Harry Dipper before Town broke the deadlock five minutes before the break.

Ciaran Houston broke on the right and his first-time cross was headed home by Footman.

Dipper was then out bravely to deny Griff an instant reply.

After the break, Callum Bell fired straight at Woodward, while Dipper had to be alert to save from Reece Williams and then Lee Hewitt.

As the game opened up, Hewitt had a great chance to equalise but with the net gaping was unable to get the ball out from under his feet and Dipper had time to get behind his eventual shot.

Griff were almost caught out on the break and only a thrilling double save by Woodward kept them in it.

Nuneaton substitute John Russell landed a hopeful lob on the roof of the net and despite late pressure and Woodward coming up for a corner, Whitnash deservedly held on to claim the trophy.