Sport

Double Success For Army Footballers After Inter-Services Wins Over RAF

The Army's footballers have won the men's and women's Inter-Services football titles after beating their RAF counterparts...

The Army's footballers have won the men's and women's Inter-Services football titles after beating their RAF counterparts.

Both games produced plenty of talking points, with the RAF women left wondering how they weren't out of sight by half-time in Oswestry.

They dominated the first half without reward against the Army, in a match switched at short notice to the 4G pitch at The New Saints.

Sam Wiley missed a chance she might have nightmares about, while Rachel Rutherford's brilliant free kick rattled the crossbar and Zara Macintosh hit the post.

And the Lionesses made the RAF pay for those missed chances after the break, with Libby Dixon slotting home the opening goal soon after the restart.

The RAF deserved their equaliser, with great work and a pinpoint pass from Steph Lee finding Zara McIntosh, who slipped the ball under Jess Horsley to level it.

But with five minutes left, a free kick at least 50 yards out from Zoe Stewart eluded everyone, including RAF goalkeeper Nicky Davies.

There was a question over whether Shannon Weston touched it - but we'll leave them to argue about that!

It was enough for the Army to win back their title from the RAF, giving them their sixth Williamson trophy in 10 years.

Army captain Warrant Officer Class 2 Krissie Wright said: "We again had to make slight changes at half-time... [but] that second half was all about heart.

"The whole team worked their socks off and gave 100% and at the end of the day we've come away worthy winners."

The men's game at Shrewsbury Town's New Meadow ground sprang to life after 11 minutes.

There was chaos on the edge of the Army box, with the referee ultimately awarding the Air Force a free kick for a challenge by Ryan Paddock on David Webb.

A brilliant strike by Alex Woodhouse gave the light blues the lead, reflecting the better start they'd made to the match.

The Army responded though and showed just how lethal its stars are in front of goal.

Their first goal was a superb effort, with Luke Noble smashing a terrific shot against the post and Callum Wilkinson collecting the rebound to volley home for 1-1.

Then on the half hour the RAF were awarded a controversial penalty when Michael Campbell was judged to have been pulled down by Rob Farkins.

Luke Cairney's excellent save from David Webb's spot-kick changed the course of the match, however. Within 10 minutes the Army had gone 3-1 up.

The second goal was beautifully worked. Adam Wakely laid it off for Wilkinson to slip past his defender before lashing home for a classy finish.

And before anyone had the chance to draw breath, Luke Noble had scored the third.

The second half was largely forgettable, with the RAF unable to break the Army down.

And on the counter, with just three minutes left, the men in red scored their fourth, after a brilliant run and cross by Sean Woolley was headed home by Peter Williams.

With 11 goals in two games, the Army are worthy winners of the Constantinople Cup for a third successive year.

Their captain, Corporal Rob Farkins, said: "To come into the Inter-Services and score 11 goals [and] concede four... you'd take that any day of the week."

The Navy and RAF teams meet next week, with the wooden spoon to avoid.

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