Irlam Rangers v Winton Wanderers

11am  19 June 2016

Eccles Sunday League, Margaret Piggott Memorial Cup, Second Round
Irlam Rangers 3 Winton Wanderers 4 (att 10)

For the second Sunday morning in a row I took in a match in the Eccles Sunday League, a three-division competition that appears to be thriving having switched last year to a summer season.

This was a cracking cup tie, with division two Irlam Rangers denied an upset when their top division visitors staged a second half comeback to overturn a 3-1 deficit.

The hosts had taken an early lead, so early it was actually before the scheduled 11am kick off time, the tie getting underway about 10 minutes early. Winton levelled, but Rangers were clinical on the break, scoring twice more before half time.

The second half was less than a minute old when Winton made it 3-2, and they drew level with half-an-hour to play. After that it was pretty much one way traffic, yet it took until the closing minutes before Winton edged ahead.

Even then there were still chances at both ends, and Irlam came close to an equaliser which would have taken the game to a penalty decider.

Irlam Rangers, along with fellow Eccles Sunday League side Irlam Vale, are based at Prince's Park, a large public park with a sports centre attached. There are two football pitches, separated by a row of trees, although the second pitch looked much smaller.

Not a bad game for what will, most likely, be my final groundhop of 2015/16 (there's a slim chance of a game on Tuesday). My 2016/17 will begin in early July, but exactly when, or where, remains to be seen.

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