The Saturday Intermediate Cup Finals kicks off at 3pm at Bracknell Town on Saturday 15th April and it promises to be a cracker! This years see's Woodley United of the Hellenic League take on Marlow United of the Thames Valley Premier League.
Having finished bottom of the Hellenic Division One East table last season Woodley United have had a fantastic season this time around. With promotion to the Hellenic Premier Division (step 5) secured they now aim for silverware against a Marlow United side still in with a shout of winning the Thames Valley Premier Division (step 7).
Woodley United manager Michael Herbert is hoping to end the week on a high; "After what has been the biggest week in the clubs history, we look forward to what promises to be a entertaining final against Marlow FC. On Monday night, We were able to secure promotion to the Hellenic Premier League, the highest level the club has ever played at."
Herbert and his management team, who were appointed at the start of the season have enjoyed the campaign; "Me and my management team have thoroughly enjoyed our first season at the club and have managed to assembled a great group of lads who have a real camaraderie and work their socks off for each other. This togetherness has been one of the major reasons we have been able to enjoy a successful season."
On the final he expects a tough test against Marlow; "We are expecting a very tough game against Marlow, who we know are a top side and one of the favourites to win the competition when it started. We would like to thanks the Berks and Bucks FA and Bracknell Town FC for being able to provide such excellent facilities and we hope to provide an entertaining game."
Marlow United manager Matt Letts took little persuading to take on the role; "When offered the manager’s job with Marlow with only half a season as assistant I jumped at the opportunity as I believed it opened up opportunities not just for myself but also for a number of talented players who had been my team mates and friends who I believed had the ability to play at a higher level."
The club have had a successful 6 seasons in the Thames Valley League and this season is no different; "With the success the club had enjoyed since rejoining what was the Reading Football league now the Thames Valley Premier League six seasons ago with two BTC Cup wins, a runners up in the Reading Senior Cup a plus elevation to the Premier Division resulting in a fourth then two third places, a Championship then runners up Marlow have certainly re established themselves in the forefront of league. This season the club are battling with Reading YMCA and Newbury FC for the title in what looks likely to be a close finish yet again."
Letts admits that although the Berks & Bucks Intermediate Cup wasn't a priority at the start of the season, individuals at the club were hoping to put some disappointments behind them; The one trophy though that has evaded Marlow over the seasons has been the Berks and Bucks Intermediate Cup although the club had enjoyed a couple of decent runs, losing two quarter final games, at Letcombe in 2012/13 4-2 and a 4-3 reverse in 2014/15 at Iver Heath Rovers, again a shock result on the day.
When the season began obviously the club prioritised the league as its number one target but secretly everyone at Marlow United, officials, players and supporters were hoping for an extended run in the Berks and Bucks Cup and you can’t have a better run than reaching the final. Starting with a first round bye United have seen off opposition from three Hellenic League opponents and one East Berks and one North Berks team to make the final adding to the reputation of the club and league in the process.
A marvelous semi final played in front of 200 spectators at Marlow FC has certainly whetted the appetite for what should be a great final against old friends Woodley United and may the best team win on the day and lift that trophy.
We would like to wish both clubs the best of luck in what should be a great occasion. A huge thank you to Kayne and Bracknell Town for the use of their superb facilities. For more upcoming finals please click here