The Double Double
Stockport defeat arch rivals Chester in another classic
After a successful tour to Bath, Stockport travelled to Caldy for the Cheshire Cup Final to face our friends, foe, arch nemesis call them what you like but one thing you do know is that any Stockport v Chester match will contain huge amounts of respect but come the final whistle there will barely be anything between the sides and so it proved again.
Stockport were finally able to name a full strength side after Joe Sheridan & Navid both passed late fitness tests ( honest! )
In a commanding first half Stockport tore up the history book and seized the initiative from Chester with three first half tries and even had one disallowed that saw Stockport put one hand firmly on the Cheshire Cup before half time.
The second half started where the first half ended with another early score for Stockport and then another disallowed effort but with ten minutes left Chester showed why they already have three Cheshire Cups and a Lexus National Trophy already in the bank as they turned the game on its head with three tries of their own.
The first came after wing Ben Perry went down in heap and with the referee appearing to look as though he was about to stop the game only to say play on with the half the Stockport team stood still, Chester went half the length of the field for what even Chester Head Coach Mark Macnmee claimed would only be a consolation. The last thing a referee says to boxers before a bout is "defend yourselves at all times" I think its fair to say the Port boys missed that one!
Macca may have thought consolation but Regan and Josh certainly had other ideas as they piled in to the Stockport pack with their pick and drive game that suddenly had the Champions elect on the ropes as they pulled a second try back with less than two minutes left to play.
With the last play of the game Chester again surged over the line for a third try which saw the final whistle go much to the relief of the Stockport players, coaches and supporters.
I think its fair to say momentum was definitely with the men in Red and I seriously wouldn't have wanted a single minute of extra time as I wouldn't have got very good odds on a Stockport win.
Massive credit to the players on both sides who never give less than 100% and put their bodies on the line every time. The personal duel between Miles Cook and Josh MacAndrew was equally as good as Klitchko V Joshua the night before and some might argue Miles & Josh almost threw as many punches ( Sorry Safeguarding officers everywhere)
At the end of the day Stockport had won the Cup again to cue celebrations long in to the night.
Well thats us done and dusted with mini rugby and half pitches and we look forward to renewing battle with Chester and the rest of our friends throughout the County next season on the open space of a full pitch!
Last but not least massive thanks to Stockport head coach Anton Hanson whose two year plan came together perfectly with two Landrover Cup wins and now two Cheshire Cups and all on his birthday!