Cup winners Chesham aiming for promotion chaser

Andy Leese and Jon Meakes

Andy Leese and Jon Meakes

First published in Sport by

A WEEK is a long time in sport and Chesham United have been on a long emotional journey in the past seven days.

And the next seven promises to be just a draining.

The rollercoaster started last Thursday night when their 13-game winning run ended with a Southern League Premier Division defeat in Poole.

That 1-0 defeat was hugely damaging to their title aspirations and when they were beaten again on Saturday their faint hopes were over.

Another 1-0 loss, this time to Stourbridge, consigned them to second place and a tame end to what had been a spectacular, against-the-odds title charge.

On the back of those losses, Chesham’s players had to drag themselves to Hemel Hempstead on Monday to watch their Dacorum rivals presented with the league trophy after a match which, at one point, looked like being a title decider.

To make matters worse, they lost 2-1 with former Chesham captain Danny Talbot scoring the winner for Hemel in front of 1,943 fans.

After being put through such an emotional ringer, Wednesday’s Bucks Cup Final against Beaconsfield – their fourth game in seven days – might well have been a bridge too far.

But, despite memories of losing the final to Beaconsfield 12 months ago, Andy Leese’s men showed their character to bounce back with a 1-0 victory at Windsor FC.

Drew Roberts settled it with a deflected shot as Chesham lifted the trophy for the 15th time.

No less significantly, a cup final win might be just the pick-me-up they need going into the promotion play-offs.

Their final scheduled league game is at home to Weymouth tomorrow, but they are already sure of a home semi-final next Tuesday night, against either Hungerford, Stourbridge or St Albans, depending on results tomorrow.

Director Alan Calder said: “It’s been a good week. On Monday we picked up the runners-up trophy and on Wednesday we picked up the Berks & Bucks Cup.

“We’re at the business end of the season and we’re lifting trophies.

“As a club we take the County Cup seriously and it’s still important to us.

“It’s also good for our confidence and morale to get back to winning because [the league] all comes down to next week.

“But no matter what happens this has been our best season in 20 years.

“In another league or in any other season our points total would have been enough to win it.

“But it’s seven years of progress now and on every level it’s been a fantastic season.”

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