Cup double for Whalley Range

Whalley Range
Whalley Range celebrate

The Lancashire and Cheshire AFL finished its season with the Rhodes Cup final at Bury FC with cup holders Mellor taking on Whalley Range, who they beat in the 2015 final.

Neither side dominated in an edgy first half with Range having the better of the chances and they were denied by a fine save from Mellor keeper Kevin Cooney.

But the game turned on its head just before the break as Mellor striker Liam McAuley was dismissed after receiving a second yellow card.

Lenny Kinsella with the Rhodes Cup
Lenny Kinsella with the Rhodes Cup

Range looked to be in control as a neat finish by Ashley Stott gave them the lead on 55 minutes.

Then Mellor showed great character as they took the game to Range with MoM David Dunn being inspirational and they deservedly drew level with a fine 20-yard strike from Dom Randle on the hour mark.

It was even-steven after that before Range again took the lead with Niall Keogh scoring with a fine individual effort.

Mellor again showed their fighting spirit as they pressed hard and had Range hanging on in the dying minutes before the final whistle blew to take the trophy back to Range after a seven-year gap.

On the same night Whalley Range seconds, who won the Wray Cup last week, completed their own double by winning the division two championship.

They beat Spurley Hey 6-2 and with main rivals Parrs Wood Celtic seconds held to an amazing 6-6 draw by Stoconians Range won by five points.

The other game played saw division C champions Chorltonians Rovers extend their lead to nine points with a 4-2 win at Moorside Rangers seconds.