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Crawley Wasps

Wasps set sights on Brighton

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Crawley Wasps LFC will this weekend try to reach their second successive Sussex Challenge Cup final, with Women’s Super League side Brighton & Hove Albion their potential opponents.

Paul Walker’s side take on Chichester City’s development squad in the semi-final, which will be held at Sidlesham FC’s ground on Sunday, 22nd January, with a 1.30pm kick-off.

The winners will meet Brighton in the showpiece on March 23rd, at the Sussex FA headquarters at Culver Road, Lancing, after the Seagulls beat Bexhill 12-1 last weekend.

Wasps also met Albion in last season’s final, losing 5-1 in front of almost 300 people – and drawing the second half 1-1 after an excellent performance. Before they can repeat that experience though, they have to get past Chichester’s second string, who are currently third in the division below Wasps.

Defender Holly Walker and striker Rosanne Fine will get another chance to play alongside some of Brighton’s brightest talent after being called up to the Sussex FA squad.

Founded in 1991, Crawley Wasps have been instrumental in the successful development of girls’ football in the Crawley area. From the early days of playing seven-a-side on full size pitches in the Sussex Girls League, the club have expanded to more than 100 playing members in teams at all levels from Under-11s to seniors.

Wasps have helped pioneer the development of ladies and girls’ football in Sussex. Previously playing in various Surrey leagues, Wasps were a founding member of the Sussex County Women and Girls’ Football League in 2002-03.

In the 2015-16 season, three of the club’s teams – the Ladies’ first team, Ladies reserves and the Under-14s – reached their respective County Cup finals.

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Crawley Wasps

Wasps meet Orient in League Cup final

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Crawley Wasps bid to end their season with silverware on Sunday when they take on Leyton Orient in the London & South East Regional Women’s League Cup final.

Paul Walker’s side meet the league champions at Maidstone United’s Gallagher Stadium, with a 2pm kick-off.

Orient won 16 of their 18 games en route to promotion to the FA Women’s Premier League, but Wasps were the first team to score against them and the first to take a point off them this season.

And despite the 10-point gap in the final table, Walker – who also took Wasps to the Sussex Women’s Challenge Cup final against Super League side Brighton – is confident they can match Orient in the showpiece.

“If we play our brand of football on the day, we’ve got a very realistic chance of winning it,” he said.

“Leyton Orient were worthy winners of our league but our squad has got stronger through the year.”

Captain Hannah Duncan added: “Finishing third and reaching two cup finals shows how far we’ve come.

“It will be a tough test, but we’ve already matched them this season so we know we can do it again.”

Wasps’ completed their warm-up for the final last Sunday, losing 4-2 to Orient’s predecessors as league champions, AFC Wimbledon.

Having fallen 2-0 behind, Suzanne Davies pulled a goal back after a cross from Faye Rabson, who also netted a consolation in the second half with the score at 4-1.

Wasps’ reserves lost 6-3 to league rivals Long Lane in a friendly, with Rosanne Fine, Topaz Luxford and Lily Beckett scoring.

Luxford was also on target earlier in the day for the Under-16s, though they lost 5-1 in their final league game against title challengers Ferring Divas.

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