JC CYRIL ANEKSTEIN CUP ROUND ONE
UJIA 0 WOODFORD WANDERERS
A hat-trick from Woodford striker Jerome Marks steered first division Woodford into the next round of the Cyril Anekstein Cup following a hard fought victory against a strong and resilient UJIA team at Chase Lodge Playing Fields.
This was always going to be a tough battle with midfield domination being the key with UJIA’s Matt Radstone and Nick Russell up against the experienced pairing of Darren Ezekiel and Harrison Midda.
Woodford looked strong from the offset and the trickery and skills of winger Elliott Gold were proving a handful for the UJIA backline.
However it was UJIA who had the first real opening chance when Assi Avital’s shot was well saved by Jay Jaffa between the Woodford sticks.
Marks should have opened the scoring minutes later but he was unable to connect with a cross from Gold.
The home side missed a gilt-edged chance on 15 minutes when Ben Nassim latched on to a mistake from Jaffa, dispossessed his marker but he failed to hit the target.
Woodford opened the scoring on 32 minutes. Darryl Green played an exquisite ball through to Gold who beat the offside trap and crossed low for Marks to slot home from five yards.
Frustration crept into the UJIA team and they had Gavin Sherman booked for dissent towards the referee.
Woodford continued where they left off at the start of the second half. The second goal came on 65 minutes when Midda’s long throw was met by Marks and he smashed home from an acute angle giving Elliott Norman no chance in the home goal.
Marks should have grabbed his hat trick two minutes later, when he tried to lob the keeper but Norman came out on top this time.
However the Woodford striker did not have to wait too long to get the match ball. After a mazy run, Green was tripped inside the box by Sherman on 75 minutes, allowing Marks to slot home to the keeper’s left to clinch the tie.
Solid Wanderers defending from man of the match Martin Sales then stopped Ben Nassim pulling one back for the home side but it was Woodford who were celebrating at the final whistle after an impressive display where the difference in divisions clearly told.
Wanderers gaffer Alex Aviram told JC Sport “I’m very happy with our performance. We turned up and did a professional job.
“We were solid at the back and creative going forward. With Jerome up top, it’s always going to be difficult for any back-line.
“We got the ball down and played some tidy football. Credit to UJIA who came out fighting but we looked far superior from the start.”
Matt Radstone joint manager of UJIA said: “We played well for much of the first half, although after conceding the first goal the difference in class began to tell.
“I’m sure we gave them a scare, and from some of our play it is evident that we can go on and have a successful season.”
UJIA: Norman, B. Radstone, Rhodes, Sherman, Selgman, Freeman (sub: Chajet), M Radstone, Russell, Rodin (sub: Hollis), Nassim, Avital
Woodford: Jaffa, Schacter, Sales, Shone, Green, Aviram (sub: Winner), Ezekiel, Gayer, Midda, Gold (sub: Kay), Marks