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Camden New Journal - by STEVE BARNETT
Published: 7 February 2008
Phoenix's Brian Dunleavy and Reddot's Jason Medford compete
Phoenix’s Brian Dunleavy and Reddot’s Jason Medford compete
Reddot joy as late flag denies plucky Phoenix

CHALLENGE Cup holders Reddot are just one win away from retaining their crown after overcoming Phoenix to book their place in this year’s final.
The Dots needed extra-time to see off their fierce rivals in a thrilling encounter at Hackney Marshes. Cup king John Donovan gave Reddot the lead within seconds of the kick-off when he intercepted in midfield before outpacing the Phoenix defence to slot past the keeper.
Leading scorer Jason Medford doubled the advantage when he capitalised on Jon Dowsett’s low cross to net his 21st goal of the season. Dots’ goalkeeper Jimmy Russell ensured his side went in at the break 2-0 up when he pulled off a magnificent fingertip save to deny Scott Cole.
Phoenix continued to apply the pressure in the second-half and finally got back into the game when Cole scored from the spot after John Yates was adjudged to have brought down Brian Dunleavy in the box.
Cole then turned provider to help Phoenix complete a remarkable comeback when he headed the ball into the path of Aaron Clarke, allowing the teenage sensation to fire home a deserved equaliser.
Controversy struck in the final minutes when Clarke looked to have won it for Phoenix with his second goal of the game, only to be denied by the offside flag.
Both teams continued to push for the all-important winner as the match moved into extra-time. With the experience of having reached 10 cup finals in five years, it was Reddot who snatched victory when midfielder Colm Lawlor struck from close range.
Phoenix manager Dave Harber was outraged after the game: “We have been robbed of our place in the final.
“When Aaron scored we had two players coming back from an offside position, but they weren’t interfering with play. The referee got it wrong. We wish all the boys from Reddot good luck in the final.”
Reddot will be confident of retaining their trophy as they prepare to face Archway Allstars in the final. Allstars have been in great form in the Camden Sunday League this season, breaking into the top four in Division One and reaching the semis of the Senior Cup.
Archway started brightly in their semi-final showdown against Division Two high-flyers DOM and took a deserved lead midway through the first-half when Leigh Hartley added the finishing touches to an incisive passing move.
Terry O’Neill scored a stunning second when he went on a powerful 35-yard run, beating several players before firing his shot under the keeper.
James Birney sealed the win on the stroke of half-time when DOM failed to clear their lines from a corner. Ben Pike scored a consolation for DOM five minutes before the end.
Meanwhile, back in the league, Cobden Athletic returned to the top of the Division One table after they came from a goal down to beat Moorehouse. Sloppy defending allowed Mo Samba to dance through Cobden’s defence to open the scoring. But Athletic hit back to take the lead thanks to goals from Pat Jones and Joe Thompson.
Moorehouse pulled the scores level when Jacquel Guei bundled the ball home from close in. But Thompson and Jones both scored again to seal three vital points for Cobden.
In Division Two, Tom O’Neill scored the only goal of the game as the Constitution went top for the first time this season with a narrow victory over Hornsey.

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