Hassocks shock Hill to claim Ann John Memorial Trophy

Hassocks joint manager Mark Dalgleish and skipper with the Ann John Memorial Trophy
Hassocks joint manager Mark Dalgleish and skipper with the Ann John Memorial Trophy

Hassocks Football Club became the first-ever winners of the Ann John Memorial Trophy with a 3-0 success over Burgess Hill on Tuesday.

The friendly competition, which took place for a third time between the sides, was won by Robins thanks to strikes from Jamie Hillwood, Liam Benson and Craig Grantham.

In the previous two trophy matches, it has ended all square with the cup shared but this time Robins came out on top.

The first-half went in typical pre-season friendly fashion with very little goal scoring chances created as it was level at 0-0.

Things continued the same way early in the second before Hillwood broke the deadlock 20 minutes from time.

Dan Stokes was the architect as his delightful through ball found Hillwood and he made no mistake with his finish.

Benson was equally as cool in front of goal soon after to make it two, before Grantham rounded it off with a third late on.

There was a nice touch from Robins’ joint bosses Mark Dalgleish and Phil Wickwar, as with five minutes remaining they brought on Ann’s 16-year-old grandson Ben John.

The real winner of the night was charity, with £800 raised for St.Peter & St.James Hospice.

Robins were delighted to score a win over their rivals and to be part of this great cause.

n Burgess Hill’s friendly woes continued as they suffered a 3-0 defeat at the hands of South Park just four days earlier.

Park, who ply their trade a league below Hill in the Ryman League South, ran out comfortable winners.

Ian Chapman’s side were playing in their first home friendly and found it difficult to get to grips with Park early on.

The visitors were rampant going 2-0 up inside 20 minutes but Hill began to settle soon after.

Dan Pearse was introduced at the interval to offer Hillians more defensive stability but the game was all but over with 15 minutes to go.

Another defensive mix up allowed Park in to round off a comfortable 3-0 friendly success.

Curtis Gayler came close late on with a 25-yard thunderbolt which had to be tipped over the bar, while Hill stopper Josh James was called into action on a couple of occasions in the closing stages.

Hill will be hoping to bounce back from these defeats when they travel to Three Bridges on Saturday, before a home clash with Lewes a week later.