8:00am Wednesday 16th April 2014
Abba Athletic lifted the Coronation Cup with a 7-6 sudden-death penalty shoot-out victory over Bishops Itchingdon in the Diamond Jubilee final at Banbury United.
The game finished 1-1 after extra time, and the shoot-out reached 5-5, before Abba’s reserve goalkeeper, Russell Johnson, pulled off a tremendous save.
Man of the match Barry McConnell then stepped up to calmly slot in the winner.
It was a special moment for all those connected with Abba, and in particular chairman Tony Bagnall, who took over as chairman, secretary and groundsman after one of his sons, Robert, lost his life in a road accident in November 1998.
Brothers Robert and Simon Bagnall, together with a group of friends, founded the club in early 1997.
Abba had taken the lead after 15 minutes when Elliot Kernaghan cut out a Bishops Itchingdon pass and struck from 25 yards.
Abba were reduced to ten men in the 55th minute when Tom Hartley was sent off after receiving a second yellow card.
Goalkeeper John Drew made two fantastic saves as Abba held on until four minutes into time added on when Ben French slotted home the equaliser.
Drew was forced to go off in the first half of extra time due to injury, and Bishops Itchingdon were reduced to ten men in the second period when Tom Cooper was sent off.
With no further scoring, it was Abba who triumphed in the shoot-out to spark enthusiastic celebrations, with Bagnall, who has attended all but one of Abba’s matches, in the midst of it.
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