Match report: Garstang FC 1 Burscough Richmond 1 (Burscough Richmond win 5-3 on penalties)

Garstang's Gaz Fawcett had a busy time of it against Burscough Richmond
Garstang's Gaz Fawcett had a busy time of it against Burscough Richmond

Garstang’s hopes of reaching this season’s Lancashire Shield final were ended following a penalty shootout defeat against Burscough Richmond.

Having travelled to the neutral venue of Skelmersdale United for the semi-final, Garstang got off to the worst possible start.

Burscough broke down the right at pace and a cross was whipped in for Lorde to give Dan Curwen no chance with a close-range header on four minutes.

At the other end, Dave Jack hit a long-range free kick straight at the keeper and, for the next 15 minutes or so, Burscough looked the more dangerous side.

Gaz Fawcett and Jack Swindlehurst, in the centre of the Riversiders’ defence, hadto be at their best to keep the Burscough forwards in check.

As the half progressed Garstang started to get a foothold in the game with the Coar brothers’ movement starting to ask questions.

Garstang had a number of half chances with Alex Colquhoun going close, Chris Byrne pulling a shot wide and the Burscough keeper dealing with the more speculative efforts that followed.

Burscough were also dangerous, particularly on the counter-attack, and Curwen had to make a superb save following a quick break and shot.

Garstang continued to press and were eventually rewarded with an equaliser when Alan Coar found the net after brother Rick’s shot had been well saved.

Jonny Hothersall nearly gave Garstang the lead when, following great work from Rick Coar, he shot just wide.

Jack also fired over as Garstang’s best period of play came in the run-up to half-time.

The second half was a more one-sided affair with Curwen called into action on numerous occasions to keep the scores level.

Ben Roberts replaced Byrne and his direct running caused Burscough some initial scares.

Down at the other end, Garstang’s rearguard, marshalled superbly by Fawcett, stood firm against continued pressure with Curwen again coming to the rescue with a tremendous double point blank save.

As the game progressed, Garstang were finding it difficult to create any further clear-cut chances and Burscough were very much the better side.

With the clock winding down, Curwen made another save at full stretch but Burscough were unable to capitalise on any of their further chances as the game ended 1-1.

With the match going to penalties, Colquhoun had his spot-kick well saved.

Each team scored their subsequent penalties, meaning Burscough progressed to the final with a well deserved victory on the day.