Lame Hospital Cup exit for Town

Kenilworth Town bowed out in the quarter-final of the Stratford Hospital Cup after succumbing to a 1-0 home defeat against Shipston Excelsior.

As has been the case with most of their pre-season games, there were a raft of enforced changes for Kenilworth.

Andy Handley, Rickylee Moore and Lee Burden were all away, as was goalkeeper Olly Manual but Joe Graham and Will Graham returned and Scott Donegan and Ashley Knights were both drafted into the squad for the first time this season.

Assistant manager Chris Turner stepped up to play in goal and was at fault for Shipston’s match-winner, when a misunderstanding with his defence allowed a Shipston attacker to nip in and score.

The early goal unsettled Kenilworth but they managed to come back into the game as the first half progressed.

But despite the hosts enjoying the bulk of possession in both halves, it was Shipston who created the clear-cut chances, twice spurning one-on-ones as they looked to make the game safe.

However, despite their profligacy, they held on comfortably to secure their passage to the last four.

Manager Wayne Goss was disappointed with his side’s tame exit, but said the focus was now on preparng for the Stratford Alliance season, which begins with a home clash against Cubbington on September 3.

“With the amount of possession we’ve had we really should have created more clear-cut chances,” he said.

“I can remember the keeper making three or four saves, but nothing spectacular.

“It’s a very disappointing way to end our pre-season matches, but we’ll work hard now for the next two weeks to ensure that we’re ready for the first game of the season.”

Town have been handed a trip to Leamington Hibs in the second round of the Coventry Charity Cup. after both clubs received a first-round bye.

n A Tash Devis hat-trick helped Kenilworth Ladies get their pre-season preparations under way with a 3-3 draw against higher level opposition in Silverdale.

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