On Wednesday 21 March, Hulme FC picked up the Sunday Challenge Shield in dramatic fashion at Shawe View. After the original fixture in late February was postponed due to the 'Beast from the East' the anticipation for this game was high.
Hulme didn't mess around in this fixture, opening the scoring in less than 30 seconds from the kick-off to take an early lead after a fast attacking move. Shocking the holders, Middleton Colts in the process. As challenges flew in from both sides, it was Colts who struck back before the 10-minute mark. Jonny Munson, who scored in last year's County Cup Final, directed a header past Declan Oliver from a corner.
As both sides traded blows, the Oldham Sunday League and Manchester Amateur Sunday League teams went into the interval level.
With a quarter left, the lads from Middleton took the lead through a penalty from Ste Cass. But it was far from over as Hulme continued to push forward and their efforts were rewarded in a crazy five-minutes from full-time. On the 86th minute Rhys Jones added to Daniel Queeley's goal and Player of the Match performance to make the game all-square again. Penalties surely.
Not in this game, with one of the last kicks of the tie, Colts fired a back-pass to their keeper and in one of the cruelest ways to lose a final, the ball trickled over the line to send the Hulme fans, players and management into hysterics. A momentus night for the players in blue recording their first Manchester FA triumph, but a tough night for the previous holders who have had continued success in both league and cup competitions over the years.
Match Officials: Jason McAuley (Referee), Tim Bartley & Kevin McNally (Assistants), Nabil Sadek (4th Official).
Highlights from the game will be uploaded to our YouTube channel in the coming days, with the dedicated cup page on this website also updated in due course.