CLEETHORPES Town are aiming to complete a league and cup double on Saturday when they take on Grimsby Borough Reserves in the Challenge Cup final.
The Owls, who are hoping to be accepted into the Baris Northern Counties East League for the 2012/13 season, sealed the Sills & Betteridge Lincolnshire League title last month and will arrive at Ashby Avenue in Lincoln as strong favourites for the match.
Cleethorpes amassed 130 goals in 32 league games and lost just once as they swatted their rivals away and equalled the best win percentage in Lincolnshire League history with an 88% victory rate.
However Clee manager Andy Liddle will be wary of Borough’s second string, who ended the league campaign in fourth place and lost just two of their final ten fixtures.
Co-led by David Smith and Matthew Powell, Borough’s young side have come on leaps and bounds this season having finished second to bottom in the Lincolnshire League last time out.
But a 3-0 trouncing at the hands of Heckington United in their final league match was hardly ideal preparation for a final and Cleethorpes will be confident of adding to their two league victories against the Wilderness Boys’ reserves so far this season.
Back in August 2011, the Owls triumphed 4-0 at the Bradley FDC with frontman Phil Cawley finding the net twice.
In the reverse fixture in October, a Paul Goodhand penalty was enough for Cleethorpes to edge past their rivals 2-1 after Luke Mascall had cancelled out Luke Beecham’s effort.
Having found the net 29 times in all competitions, Mascall has been one of the key men in what has been an extraordinary season for Cleethorpes Town.
But unfortunately the league champions will be without another indispensable player in second highest scorer Ricky Belding. Belding, who has scored 24 goals this campaign, is suffering from ankle ligament damage and has been ruled out.
Cleethorpes’ Challenge Cup run started in September when Lincoln United Reserves were seen off in a 4-0 victory. Skegness Town and Horncastle Town were each hammered in the subsequent rounds, 7-3 and 5-0 respectively.
Grimsby Borough Reserves beat Sleaford Town Reserves and Nettleham before a thrilling penalty shootout win over Swineshead Institute in March put them through to the final.
Cleethorpes Town are providing travel down to Ashby Avenue for the game, which is a 3pm kick-off. Anyone interested in taking advantage should contact David Mann at email@example.com.