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Match Report Special – Kick Cancer Cup 2023

Thursday 25th May

Kick Cancer Cup 2023

One last game to end the season and it will be a memorable one as the footballing community comes together for one last time for the last Kick Cancer Cup, held in memory of two special women whose lives were taken for too soon by cancer, Samantha Issacson and Charlene Martin.

  The 6th and last Kick Cancer Cup being played between the Sam’s XI and Charlene’s XI squads at the Westwood Road Stadium home of St Ives Town FC’s men’s and women’s sides. 

  The Kick Cancer Cup has raised over £50,000 for charity over the 5 season’s it has been held prior to this evenings event. Samantha Issacson was just 25 years old when she was diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer in 2014. With the help of family and friends set up the Kick Cancer Cup to help raise funds for charities close to her heart as she began her tough battle with the decease, continued playing throughout for Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds (many of her old teammates coming together once again this evening to play in her memory) Outfield or in goal lived life to the full, traditionally the Kick Cancer Cup between Sam’s squad and an S-Tech Cambridgeshire Women’s League representative squad, played at Histon FC a special occasion raising vital funds. After a long battle with cancer Sam very sadly passed away in 2021. Sam wanted their to be one more Kick Cancer Cup and everyone has come together to make it happen.

Samantha Isaacson keeping goal at the Kick Cancer Cup 2018

 Charlene Martin was to tragically lose her own battle with bowel cancer in February 202 after a three year battle with bowel cancer herself. Had played in previous Kick Cancer Cup’s with Sam Issacson and was a much loved member of the St Ives Town and wider football community. One of the original members if the St Ives Town Ladies football club that was to burst onto the women’s football scene in Cambridgeshire and become an integral part of the club as a whole. As the @bowelcancerballer helped to raise awareness of the decease as she highlighted her own battle with cancer.

Charlene Martin one of the founding players at St Ives Town Ladies.

 Cancer will affect us all at some point in our lifetimes either directly or indirectly and this evening we come together at St Ives Town to play and watch a football match in their memory but also to enjoy the occasion as they would have wanted.

  A brand new artificial pitch for St Ives Town FC these days a good size nice and flat… but I kind of miss it rising up in one corner like it used too with the old grass pitch The clubhouse overlooking one side of the pitch 3 small seated and covered stands opposite. The bar and kitchen hatch open serving hot food and drinks. A cake stall selling homemade cakes (very nice too) and a raffle selling out of tickets that offered lots of wonderful prizes, all for a good cause the Arthur Rank Hospice. 

SAM’S XI squad – Michelle McCormack (C), Liz Pamplin, Emma Da Costa, Dominika Szary, Emma Roberts, Jenna Hulme, Charlotte Taylor, Ebony Crook, Emma Clark, Jess Anderson, Joeli Kirby, Katie Chaudhry, Kayleigh Whitehead, Kirstie Smith, Krissie Taylor, Laura Mills, Stacey Fullicks, Marie Stubbings, Naomi Weir, Nat Powell-Wells, Liv Ashby, Rosie Boynes, Seema Grewal, Stacey Taylor, Tash Applegate, Vicky Houchin, Kate Taylor, Holly Hayes, Abi Molloy, Emily Ingle & Connie De Martino.

 Management team – Vicky Neal & Jade Bell.

Sam’s XI squad (photo credit Edward Payne)


 CHARLENE’S XI squad – Caitlin McGeown (C), Kira Markwell, Georgia Stancombe, Mollie Berryman, Sascha Smith, Emily Stephenson, Molly Flack, Sophie Marjoram, Kellie Dixon, Caitlin Jarman, Koren Evans, Sophie Crook, Niamh Sutherland, Sasha Smith, Katie Stancombe, Cherish Sibanda, Steph Ransome, Georgia Astley, Jade Carpenter & Ruth Fox.

 Management team – Neil Martin & Darren Marjoram.

Charlene’s XI squad (photo credit Edward Payne)


 A minutes applause held for both Sam and Charlene prior to kick off. A charity game a special occasion will dispense with the traditional match report format the over 50 players, current, sort of retired and retired coming together across both squads the game split into 3, 30 minute halves giving all a chance to play sub will be numerous and I’m not going to keep track of them all but will do my best. Special shirts make for the occasion, the Sam’s XI squad wearing pink coloured shirts, Charlene’s XI squad wearing sky blue, black and white shirts with vibes to St Ives from which all of the squad are current or have previously played.

A minutes applause enjoyed before kick-off

 St Ives Mayor, Phil Pope leading the two sides out onto the pitch on a pleasant sunny evening. Caitlin McGeown, Charlene Martin’s daughter captaining the Charlene’s XI squad with her father Neil managing along side Darren Marjoram to get the Kick Cancer Cup 2023 underway, the ball rolled back into the middle then defence, fired forwards up to the left, Sarah Bodger in the back line for Sam’s XI volleying the ball clear.

Charlene’s XI captain, Caitlin McGeown

  The ball knocked back and forth between defences as both sides launch it forwards in the early exchanges, Charlene’s XI attack left the ball crossed into the top of the area, Bodger again in to clear for Sam’s XI. Michelle McCormack captaining the Sam’s XI squad bringing the ball on from the back moving left sends the ball on down the line for Katie Chaudhry, Katie Stancombe getting across to challenge for Charlene’s XI forwards into Niamh Sutherland looks to play it right for Caitlin Jarman pushing on, Emma Roberts tackling for Sam’s XI at full back.

 McCormack taking the ball on for Sam’s XI from the back linking with Ebony Crook pulling wide left goes on, Molly Flack getting across her path at the back for Charlene’s XI to see the ball back to goalkeeper Kira Markwell to clear. Liz Pamplin with 500 appearances for Cambridge United WFC before retiring in goal for Sam’s XI in the 1st period getting her gloves up to block at close range on Katie Stancombe’s shot as she moves in to attack the goal from the right following in on Caitlin Jarman’s free-kick fired in from deep on the right for Charlene’s XI.

Liz Pamplin out to close Katie Stancombe down as she runs through to attack the goal (photo credit Edward Payne)

 Jarman bursting on for Charlene’s XI on the right, Roberts closing on to tackle well for Sam’s XI. Chaudhry fed on by Roberts down the left for Sam’s XI threading a low pass into the D for Crook to attack, Flack again across the attack to put the ball into Markwell to launch clear. Ruth Fox clipping a pass out to Jarman racing on right flank her cross from the corner fizzed in near post claimed by Pamplin. 

  I’ve seen most of these players in action over the years and the memory banks are kicking in a bit got a few duplicate numbers out there but thankfully no twins to deal with cause they can be a real challenge, but I have my ways of telling them apart (and that’s not going to be revealed on here) Emma Clark for Sam’s XI defending on Fox to see the ball back for Pamplin to clear. Emily Ingle with the ball central for Sam’s XI has Marie Stubbings making a run inside from the right, plays the ball into her, Sasha Smith lunging in to tackle for Charlene’s XI right of the D winning the ball.

  Sutherland sending the ball into Fox top of the D shifts to the left making room to shoot the attempt pulled wide of Pamplin’s left post. McCormack getting forwards well for Sam’s XI into the left channel with a chip at goal from 20 yards out the ball dropping wide of the left post. Roberts winning the ball at the back for Sam’s XI forwards for Crook up the line inside to Stubbings, Georgia Stancombe closing in to get across the attack to see the ball safely back to Markwell to clear.

Molly Flack (photo credit Edward Payne)

  GOAL! Sutherland with the ball through the middle for Charlene’s XI sends the pass out to the right for Jarman getting on up the wing her cross fired in near side as Fox runs in to attack the goal, Bodger with her putting her under pressure the ball striking the defender deflected past Pamplin inside the post for Charlene’s XI to take the lead 0-1.

  Changes for both Emma Da Costa, who can operate either outfield or in goal, Naomi Weir and Kirstie Taylor coming on for Sam’s XI. Emily Stephenson on in defence for Charlene’s XI. Choudhry taking the ball on left for Sam’s XI pushing it into Crook corner of the area, strikes a curled attempt over Markwell’s crossbar.

  Charlene’s XI are the younger side and showing more energy bursting forwards well with pace, Georgia Stancombe defending well shielding the ball at the back. Breaking on with numbers up Fox and Katie Stancombe combining as Pamplin comes to close down top of her box the flag raised halting the attack. McCormack bringing the ball on for Sam’s XI left into the top of the area, Georgia Stancombe winning it back for Charlene’s XI.

 GOAL! Charlene’s XI attacking through the middle, Sutherland with Katie Stancombe into Fox inside the D evading tackles comes left of goal to shoot low firing the ball hard past the diving Pamplin to double the lead 0-2.

Ruth Fox (photo credit Edward Payne)

  Fox after the ball into the box with Katie Stancombe getting on to support, Bodger lunging in to tackle for Sam’s Xi. Caitlin McGeown moving on with the ball up the right for Charlene’s XI forwards for Fox into the corner closed down nips back in to steal the ball back winning a corner kick. Taken short before being whipped into the area claimed well by Markwell. Jarman getting on right side for Charlene’s XI, Fox coming to for the ball look to play a one two, Taylor getting a foot in to reclaim the ball for Sam’s XI.

 Fox taking the ball into the box on the right whipping a low strike in towards goal, taken well by Pamplin down to gather at the near post. Jarman again on the right inside for Katie Stancombe curls a shot in towards goal taken cleanly by Pamplin. The 1st 3rd almost up Sam’s XI win a throw high on the left Choudhry dropping the ball into McCormack sends the pass down the line for Crook in the corner left to cross into the six yard box met by Da Costa her touch deflecting the ball wide of the near post.

  The 1st 3rd up Charlene’s XI leading 2-0 a quick turn around with Sam’s XI ringing the changes, Da Costa donning the keepers gloves now, getting the 2nd 30 underway Joeli Kirby playing the ball out to right, cut out by Cherish Sibanda. Mollie Berryman for Charlene’s XI out to the right for McGeown her cross into the top of the area cut out by Holly Hayes for Sam’s XI. Fox lively up top for Charlene’s XI linking with Berryman on the right the cross in along the face of goal deflected behind for a corner kick.

Sam’s XI captain, Michelle McCormack

  Charlene’s XI lively in the final 3rd at the start of the 2nd period, Marjoram to Jade Carpenter tracking inside from the right feeds the ball across the top of the area into Fox left of the D her shot struck low wide of the left post. 

Caitlin McGeown (photo credit Edward Payne)

  Laura Mills leading the attack for Sam’s XI now the ball rolled into her from the right takes it on into the box striking hard at the near post, Markwell making a superb save getting down to her left to knock the ball behind for a corner kick. Players up into the area for Sam’s XI a great delivery swung in central Szary rising to meet it top of the six yard box plants her header straight at Markwell who grabs hold of the ball to save. 

Jess Anderson tackling well for Sam’s XI at the back as Fox looks to take the ball on into the box from the left channel. The ball given away at the back Sam’s XI inviting pressure at the back, Hayes getting back on Carpenter to put in the tackle as she drives for the box. First saw Stacey Fullicks playing for Netherton has gone on to into a refereeing career a successful one too amongst elite in the country, still retains that completive edge with the ball at her feet for Sam’s XI sending the pass on for Taylor right her ball into Mills cut out top of the D by Stephenson for Charlene’s XI.

(photo credit Edward Payne)

 GOAL! Charlene’s XI extend the lead the ball played into Fox 20 yards out central moves to her left to turn to shoot angling a strike in towards goal up over the keeper to make it 0-3. 

Ruth Fox scoring Charlene’s XI’s 3rd goal (photo credit Edward Payne)

 Sam’s XI winning a corner on the left, swung in near side, Charlene’s XI defending but have a player down in the box a break in play. Charlene’s XI pressing forwards better putting the Sm’s XI defence under a little pressure, Taylor winning the ball on for Mills right side on for Szary attempts to lay it o for Fullicks top of the D, Berryman defending for Charlene’s XI the ball out for a corner on the right. Flung in near side Fullicks up to attack the ball knocked down into the six yard box comes out to Mills at the far post with the outside of her boot turns the shot wide.

 Fullicks coming on with the ball into the channel looking to link up with Mills in attack, no way through as the Charlene’s XI defence track back well to see the ball back into Markwell to clear. Da Costa out to the right of her six yard box diving down to save at the feet of Dixon as she steals into attack the ball right of goal for Charlene’s XI as the ball is lost top of the area. Fullicks winning the ball back central for Sam’s XI 30 yards out rolling it into the path of Clark 20 yards out her strike fire into the keeper. 

Jess Anderson (photo credit Edward Payne)

Carpenter with a strike from outside the box for Charlene’s XI, Da Costa down to beat it away, Dixon racing in can’t get to the loose ball before Da Costa is able to claim it. Fullicks bringing the ball down as it drops over her left shoulder moves forwards, McGeown defending to see the ball out for a corner on the left. The corner swept into the six yard box the ball taken off the head of Clark as she stoops to drive the header home. Szary with the ball out left for Sam’s XI fired into Fullicks right of the D intercepted by Astley at the back for Charlene’s XI.

  Connie De Martino sending the ball on for Sam’s XI as they break through the middle out to Mills her cross into the area pushed away to the left by Markwell taking it out of Clark’s path central, Szary racing in to follow up top of the area, McGeown in to charge her down. Sam’s XI on the counter Mills racing on with the ball right squaring it across the box into Clark, volley’s over.  

 Sam’s XI with a couple of  chances towards the end of the 2nd 3rd to get back into the game, on more 30 minute period to go the changes rung once again with Szary another who can operate outfield and in goal donning the gloves for Sam’s XI. Charlene’s XI to get the final 30 minutes underway the ball out to the right lifted forwards won back by Bodger for Sam’s XI. 

Laura Mills (photo credit Edward Payne)


 Sam’s XI pressing on the left to win a corner players up the delivery in near post Markwell in amongst bodies to push behind for a 2nd corner. Once again fired into a crowded near post area knocked on cross the six yard box, McCormack free to strike the ball on the volley as she spins to attack the ball loops up and in towards goal, Markwell behind it her arms up to claim the dropping ball. Sam’s XI pressing up into the box Crook left of goal stabbing a shot wide of the left post.

  Fox back on for Charlene’s XI attacking the right channel taking the ball on into the box, Bodger across to tackle for Sam’s XI. Fullicks taking the ball on through the middle for Sam’s XI playing the pass out to Stubbings right swinging a cross into the six yard box the 1st time shot chipped into the keeper. Charlene’s XI on through the middle Berryman for Fox shooting from 20 yards out the ball gloves down into the ground and claimed by Szary.

 Carpenter with a 35 yard strike sent over the bar. Markwell with a show stopping save for Charlene’s XI as Stubbings racing to the by-line right side whips in a dangerous ball for Grewal to turn goalwards from close range, central, Markwell instinctively throwing a hand out to her left to save the ball deflecting it behind past the post for a corner kick. Sam’s XI going for it 3 goals down need something, McCormack on for Fullicks right on the angle sends a shot wide across the goal.

Kira Markwell (photo credit Edward Payne)

 Markwell getting out to claim the ball taking it off the head of Grewal as the ball is squared into the six yard box rom the right. Multiple changes for Sam’s Xi as they push on in the 2nd period. Charlene’s XI defending the top of their area counter on the right the ball lifted into Fox peeling wide takes the ball down charging into the area before striking the ball low on the angle fired in near post Szary with an excellent save diving forwards full stretch to get a glove on the ball turn it wide across goal, has she done enough to keep it out? Just! The ball running narrowly wide of her far post for the corner.

Dominika Szary equally adapt outfield as in goal (photo credit Edward Payne)

 Anderson defending for Sam’s XI as the ball comes on left side into the box. Into the final 15 minutes the changes coming thick and fast loosing track of how many players are on the pitch have a Teddy Bear mascot to contend with too looking to get involved in the action. Markwell coming off for Charlene’s XI, Marjoram in between the sticks. Sam’s XI with a corner on the left headed on across goal Roberts to Mills out wide the cross back in central turned over from close range.

  Sam’s XI pressing late into the game as they search for a goal crossed into close to goal cleared off the line as the ball is missed by the keeper out to the right Mills volleying over. Fullicks out to Mills on the right fires a cross looping into the six yard box met by Ingle volleys her strike over the bar. McCormack blasting a 35 yard strike over the bar Sam’s XI throwing the kitchen sink forwards late on. Choudhry taking the ball to the right sending a cross in central Stubbings racing in on goal flashing her first time effort over the top.

(photo credit Edward Payne)

  Chances mounting for Sam’s XI, just won’t go in as Mills getting free wide right slices a shot wide. Into the final minutes. Sam’s XI winning a free-kick corner of the area on the right Ingle on the ball fired in across the face of goal attacked far post but deflected behind for a corner. An inswinging ball knocked down near side in towards goal the ball defended cleared off the line. Sam’s XI throwing everything forwards at the end but can find no way through as Charlene’s XI defend their box scrambling the ball clear. 

  Time up the final whistle blows and despite the chances mounting Sam’s XI can’t find a goal as Charlene’s XI hold out to win the game 3-0 to win the Kick Cancer Cup. 

Charlene’s XI winners of the 6th Kick Cancer Cup (photo credit Edward Payne)

An entertaining game enjoyed by a crowd of 320 raising a good amount for charity. Plenty of thank yous to be applauded at the end before the presentation of the trophy none more so than for Sam and Charlene, a fitting occasion to remember them by.

 Well done to everyone involved especially Sam’s best friend, Vicky Neal who made sure her request was fulfilled and to everyone who played their part to help, the Kick Cancer Cup committee, St Ives Town for hosting the event and to all the players and attendees to special night no doubt. Thanks to Vicky Neal for the help with the squads, and to Edward Payne for allowing me to use some of his pictures too. 

By Darren Gilham

Match Report Special – Kick Cancer Cup 2019

Thursday 26th September

Kick Cancer Cup 2019

 Delighted to be covering a match report of a different variety on Women’s Football East, a special date in the women’s footballing calendar in Cambridgeshire now entering it’s 5th year the Kick Cancer Cup.

  A charity match between Sam’s XI and an S-Tech XI League representative side, raising money for two very worthy causes, the Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust (ACT) and the Arthur Rank Hospice.

  Invited to write a match report last year only too happy to cover it again having been a spectator at previous games. The Kick Cancer Cup set up by the aforementioned Sam, Samantha Isaacson with support from many friends and family. Sam was diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer in 2015, both charities playing a large role in helping her with her ongoing treatment. In all that time has continued to play for her club Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds outfield or in goal. Sam has helped raise nearly £50,000 so far for charity.

  The Kick Cancer Cup contested between Sam’s XI and an Cambridgeshire S-tech XI assembled from the clubs playing with the Premiership and Championship in the county 17 clubs in total represented. The S-Tech XI having had the better of Sam’s XI in the first 3 years of the Kick Cancer Cup. Sam’s XI winning the game for the first time last year 3-2 will be determined to make it back to back wins. 

  Plenty to be organised, cake stall, raffle, food and bar all available the venue Histon FC’s Glassworld Stadium the pitch a good size nice and wide in very good condition. Rain earlier in the week stayed away most of the day leaving a pleasant night for football. Musical entertainment from Holly Jean Sings before the match, a singer/songwriter from Cambridgeshire. The Cambridge Dynamite Cheerleaders putting on a display prior to kick-off with band 15:48 providing the half-time entertainment. A good sized crowd building as the two squads prepared for the game.

Sam’s XI squad – Samantha Issacson, Dominika Szary, Emma D’Costa, Abi Molloy, Sarah Bodger, Jess Anderson, Seema Grewal, Nat Wells, Kirstie Smith, Georgia Astley Tyler, Nikki Cowan, Emma Place, Laura Mills, Kayleigh Whitehead, Jo Woods, Emma Clark, Jenna Hulme, Katie Luddy, Krissie Taylor, Olivia Clark, Naomi Weir, Stacey Fullicks, Michelle McCormack, Ebony Rule, Marie Stubbings, Stacey Kemp, Vicky Houchin, Joeli Kirby & Tash Applegate.

Sam’s XI Management Team – Vicky Neal & Kevin Knock.

Sam’s XI squad 

S-Tech XI squad – Beth Goodman & Fran Kavanagh (Ketton Ladies), Peggy Keeler & Steph Swinyard (Cambourne United), Libbie Read & Ruth Telfer (Cambridge Rangers), Louisa Harwood & Kat Silver (Isleham United Ladies), Caitlin McGeown & Cherish Sibanda (St Ives Town Ladies), Evie Jakes & Leah Harper (Newmarket Town Women), Jess Farchica & Carmen Herridge (ICA Sports Ladies), Alexi Waters & Eleanor McLeish (March Town United Ladies), Melissa Collins & Jasmine Luckett (Mildenhall Town Ladies), Fran Piltsch & Nikki Hancock (Park Ladies), Sydney Davies & Amanda Binge (Histon Ladies), Kayla Dortch & Charley Ireland (PNS Ladies), Hannah Lock & Jess (Cambridge City Ladies), Georgina Parrett & Katie Cooper (Netherton United Ladies), (Kat Clocherty & El Morgan (Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds), Amy Newell and Chloe Stanborough (Leverington Ladies), Beth Harding & Ella Terri (Haverhill Rovers Ladies).

S-Tech XI Management Team – Katie Critchley & Liz Pamplin.

The S-Tech XI representative squad 

  Large squads for both sides and substitutes happening on mass, didn’t even try to keep track of them, everyone playing their part in the event.

  The S-Tech XI to get tonight’s charity match underway kicking off 1st half wearing grey coloured shirts with black shorts and socks. Sam’s XI wearing blue shirts a white upper part, black shorts and blue socks. The ball put back into defence sent long at the start out to the right Georgina Parrett making the run, Jess Anderson deals with the ball at the back for Sam’s XI on the immediate counter attack the ball forwards Marie Stubbings racing in behind, the ball safely gathered by Katie Cooper keeping goal for the S-Tech XI.

  GOAL! An early goal capping a lively start to the game, the S-Tech XI attacking on the left wing the ball high slid forwards into the run of Hannah Lock sliding in to get to the ball before the defence sends in past goalkeeper Samantha Issacson across the face of goal and in of the opposite post to opening the scoring 0-1.


Hannah Lock being congratulated after scoring the opening goal 

  Laura Mills advancing with the ball down the right for Sam’s XI lays it forwards with Stubbings bursting through the middle, just a little too early the flag up against her. Both sides looking to get forwards quickly S-Tech clear on the right a cross/shot fired along the front of goal out past the far post. Parrett looks to put Peggy Keeler in as the full back goes past her in attack, Anderson across to win the challenge. The ball fed through the middle into Stubbings top of the D she looks to pass the Katie Luddy up with her, Beth Goodman close in defending against Luddy to set up an attack for the S-Tech XI, Parrett lively on the right early on. 

  GOAL! Sam’s XI come back to level the scores turning play around defending the ball put on over halfway with Stubbings latching onto it off like a hare baring down on the area into the box closing in on the six yard box can’t be caught opens her body to send a low shot under the keeper before she can get down to save 1-1. 10 minutes gone.

  GOAL! No sooner have they got back on level terms then Sam’s XI concede, Chloe Stanborough playing in centre midfield of the S-Tech Xi taking the ball on travelling a pace right side before cutting back and strike the ball well form 25 yards out the ball racing across the keeper into the bottom corner 1-2.

Chloe Stanborough

  Sam’s XI push on in attack Krissie Taylor up with Stubbings top of the area outnumbering Keller, the defender nevertheless cool under pressure keeping her eyes on the ball not letting either it get away from her before clearing for Parrett to bring up field. Mills always ready to take players on attacking down the right wins a throw deep. Keeler the first change of the match coming off with Caitlin McGeown joining the S-Tech defence. McGeown called into action straight away the ball in from the right evading the crowded near post area runs across goal, Taylor ready to pounce inside the six yard box McGeown nipping in in front of her to win the ball and clear.


 Issacson with a fantastic save down low at her near post to deny Parrett a goal as she slides in to push the ball goalwards inside the area. The ball put long for Sam’s XI, Stubbings controlling well bringing it on to the top of the S-Tech area, the opposition defence closing her option Stubbings lays it back to the advancing, Vicky Houchin she leans into a shot from 25 yards out the ball looping towards goal not troubling Cooper. A free-kick on halfway for the S-Tech XI, Goodman over it, decides to try her luck sending a high ball towards goal, drops behind for a goal kick. 

  Taylor combining with Stubbings as they advance for Sam’s XI through the middle, McGeown coming in field tackling to regain possession. Great running from Mills on Sam’s XI right wing getting deep squared a cross in intercepted and cleared near post by S-Tech’s Steph Swinyard. S-Tech quick to launch a counter offensive Stanborough on for Fran Kavanagh to race clear right channel into the area one on one with the keeper, Issacson stays big to make the blocking save as Kavanagh shoots.

   I’m getting little opportunity to put the pen down the action one end the the other Stubbings forever a threat ready to burst in behind, Cooper making the decision to race out of her box in an attempt to reach the ball before Stubbings can shoot, the ball put past the keeper, rolls agonisingly wide of the far post. Half and hour played sees a change en masse think Cooper’s still the only one out there a new team for both sides with 15 minutes of the half left. A free-kick on halfway right for the S-Tech XI, Beth Harding on it the ball towards the top of the area headed on into the area hooked clear by the Sam’s XI defence a counter on Stacey Kemp making the central run shoots from all of 30 yards out, Cooper back peddling towards her goal able to gather the ball.

   GOAL! Sam’s XI taking full advantage of all the new additions to the action bringing it back to 2-2. Stacey Fullicks building a career as a referee these days marking her return from a 4 week injury lay off with a playing cameo tonight on the ball for Sam’s Xi left side lifts the pass on for Tash Applegate in attack coming over to receive the ball a good touch and turn sees her escape her marker to make for the area, the keeper coming out to challenge a 50/50 challenge off her legs Applegate off balance staying on her feet after the ball deflected in behind and sends a shot from inside the six yard box to score 2-2.

  The new look Sam’s XI bright as they push on Fullicks keen to get forwards on the left, Harding sliding into the tackle forcing her wide, Fullicks keeping possession to cross can only find the side netting. Sam’s XI press the advantage winning a corner, the ball in towards the far post claimed confidently by the keeper. Another corner finding it’s way to though to Fullicks inside the area looks to dig the ball out of her feet between the Harding and Davies get the ball clear. The ball won back in midfield threaded through to Applegate left of the D 20 yards out strikes a swerving shot in on target, Cooper saves.

 A strong end to the 1st half for Sam’s XI have their opponents on the back foot, Applegate continuing to look for an opening. Joeli Kirby with a driving run into the box her ball forwards charged down. Kat Clocherty battling for the ball central for the S-Tech XI almost releases her attackers late on Sam’s XI new keeper gathering the ball.  

Half-time Sam’s XI 2-2 S-Tech XI

  Honours even at half-time all square Sam’s XI coming back to level thing’s up twice, the game wide open with another 45 minutes to play. Still drawing after that and it goes to penalties. Half-time entertainment underway, a fantastic crowd in attendance over 500 people great to see and a great atmosphere. Emma Place on for Nat Wells at the start of the 2nd period for Sam’s XI who restart the match, S-Tech quickly pressing the ball getting away on the right a throw won deep, the ball helped on into the area cleared, Sam’s XI breaking left side the ball lifted on Kemp getting a shot away to beat the advancing keeper but play brought back with an up raised flag.

  Jo Woods defending outside the area for Sam’s XI as Clocherty looks to play in Amanda Binge. Possession won back in midfield by the S-Tech XI forwards to Binge wins her side a corner. Harding offering herself for a short corner on the left the ball crossed in ventral top of the box Clocherty getting a shot away the ball running wide. Fullicks lining up a strike from distance wide left she’d the ball fall wide of the near post. Eleanor McLeish making a good run across her opponents defence left to right as the ball is played over the top controls well to unleash a shot back across goal from 25 yards out the strike rolling wide of the far post. 

  Good work between Kirby and Seema Grewal combining right side for Sam’s Xi sees Kemp away to attack centrally, challenged the ball out for a throw. The trio with more good work passing the ball between them to make ground up the pitch succeed in finding Fullicks on the clear wide left. Fullicks driving infield strong on the ball taking it into the box the angle tight her shot blocked, the ball lose at the near post Applegate latching onto it sees another block coming in deflected out of the box a distance shot falling behind the goal.

  A free-kick wide right for Sam’s XI, Applegate over it a good delivery into the area headed clear, Kirstie Smith latching onto it 20 yards out her shot rising over the crossbar. Pressure from Sam’s XI a strong start to the 2nd half. Play stopped though with a player down, Applegate unable to continue after lengthy treatment, good to see her back in action her game ending. S-Tech XI changing their goalkeeper with El Morgan coming on. Soon after play resumes Kirby with a strong dribbling run into the opposition area tackled before she can get a shot away.

  The 2nd change en masse now as the game enters the final half hour. Is an entertaining contest a large pitch both sides looking to get in behind, the crowd enjoying the occasion. Jess Farchica bringing the ball on from the back for the S-Tech XI, has ICA Sports team mate Carmen Herridge ahead of her she rolls it on for Melissa Collins the ball taken wide into the corner a great cross flashes in across the six yard box dangerous but no one can get a touch to turn it towards goal. Leah Harper taking the ball forwards central S-Tech regaining some momentum, rolled into Collins, tackled top of the box. 

  Kayla Dortch in to win the ball in midfield passes forwards for McLeish aiming to get away left, the keeper out to the corner of her area able to claim safely. The game moving into the final quarter hour. More changes for Sam’s XI, Stubbings back on the field. Herridge linking up with Kat Silver on the left a throw won taken quickly Herridge looking to carry the ball inside makes for the box Molloy in to challenge win the tackle for Sam’s XI. Harper getting in behind on the left into the area closed down lays it back to Herridge, Georgia Astley Tyler getting back on her to challenge has a free-kick given against her. 

Samantha Issacson

  Grewal doing the defensive work as Harper races away with the ball on the left. Issacson coming on for the final minutes of the game in attack. Harper lively for the S-Tech XI winning a late corner, fired in low into a crowded six yard box at the near post a shot blasted goalwards, Grewal defending the post blocking on the line, another scramble for the ball mayhem before the keeper can get down to smother the ball. Molloy clearing a Jasmine Luckett sees a shot charged down, the S-Tech side pushing for a late winner, Dortch with a strike from distance save in the keepers gloves. The final whistle blows the game going to penalties.

Full time Sam’s XI 2-2 S-Tech XI


  S-Tech to get the shootout underway the ball struck low and accurate into the bottom left corner 1-0.

  Michelle McCormack up first for Sam’s XI, opens her body to sends a pacy low drive wide of the keeper 1-1.

  S-Tech’s 2nd penalty struck high evading the diving keeper to nestle into the back of the net 2-1.

  Sam’s XI, 2nd penalty touched onto the post by the keeper diving at full stretch advantage S-Tech 2-1.

  The advantage gone straight away S-Tech’s next penalty hit central not having the height or power to beat the keeper 2-1.

 A chance for Sam’s XI to level things up Issacson to take their 3rd penalty struck well low into the bottom corner 2-2.

  McLeish up to take S-Tech’s 4th penalty hit well to the keepers right to make it 3-2.

   Luddy to take the 4th penalty for Sam’s XI confident to make it 3-3.

  Farchica strikes her penalty low to the left of the keeper, guessing right is down to save at full stretch 3-3.

  A chance to win it for Sam’s Xi the 5th penalty hit high the goalkeeper diving to push the ball away to send the shootout to sudden death 3-3.

  Beth Goodman to take S-Tech’s sixth penalty however she has to make a dash to the dug out to grab her boots, new tactics as she ties her laces before the spot, does the trick as she blasts the ball home! 4-3 (may well be the new routine should Ketton Ladies face any penalty shootouts during the season).

   Joeli Kirby up to take Sam’s XI has to score, agony as the keeper saves high to see the S-Tech XI win the 2019 Kick Cancer Cup.

  A penalty shootout win for the S-Tech XI to win back the Kick Cancer Cup, truth though everyone’s a winner out there playing the game for a great cause regardless of the result. 

The S-Tech XI representative side 2019 Kick Cancer Cup winners.

  A hugely enjoyable night, fantastic football despite all the changes everyone enjoying themselves a crowd of over 500 in attendance and I’m sure lots raised for charity. Congratulations to everyone playing, officiating and organising the event. Grateful to write a report, hopefully everyone is where I thought they were. Thanks to Stacey Fullicks and Liz Pamplin for getting those all important numbers and too Gary Reed for letting me use his pictures for the report.

Match Report Special – Kick Cancer Cup 2018

Thursday 27th September

Kick Cancer Cup 2018

A match report of a different variety on Women’s Football East, a special date in the women’s footballing calendar in Cambridgeshire now entering it’s 4th year the Kick Cancer Cup.

A charity match between Sam’s XI and an S-Tech XI League representative side, raising money for two very worthy causes, the Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust (ACT) and the Arthur Rank Hospice.

Invited to write a match report for the night only too happy to oblige having been a spectator at previous games. The Kick Cancer Cup set up by the aforementioned Sam, Samantha Isaacson with support from many friends and family. Sam was diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer in 2015, both charities playing a large role in helping her with her ongoing treatment. In all that time has continued to play for her club Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds outfield or in goal. Sam has helped raise £35,000 so far for charity.

The Kick Cancer Cup contested between Sam’s XI and an Cambridgeshire S-tech XI assembled from the clubs playing with the Premiership and Championship in the county. The S-Tech XI having had the better of Sam’s XI in the previous 3 years of the Kick Cancer Cup last years game going all the way to penalties. Sam assembling a squad this year to try and win the cup for the 1st time. 

  Plenty to be organised, cake stall, raffle, food and bar all available the venue Histon FC’s Glassworld Stadium the pitch a good size nice and wide in very good condition a perfect night for football starting to cool down after a pleasant sunny autumn day. Musical entertainment from Holly Jean Sings before the match and at half-time, a singer/songwriter from Cambridgeshire. A good sized crowd building as the two squads prepare for the game.

 Sam’s XI squad – Samantha Isaacson, Abi Molloy, Sarah Bodger, Nikki Cowan, Krissie Taylor, Olivia Clarke, Emma Clark, Jo Woods, Seema Grewal, Kirsty Geal, Yaz Upson, Marie Stubbings, Katie Luddy (all Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds), Emma D’Costa, Vicky Houchin, Naomi Weir,  (all unassigned), Faye Marsh (retired), Emma Roberts, Nat Wells, Ebony-Jade Rule (all Cambridge United WFC), Dominika Szary, Jess Anderson (both Newmarket Town Ladies), Georgina Astley-Taylor, Charlene Martin (both St Ives Town Ladies Development), Laura Mills, Kayleigh Whitehead (both Cambridge City Ladies), Tash Applegate (Peterborough United Ladies), Jemma Hulme (Hilton Ladies), Michelle McCormack (Leafield Athletic Ladies), Joeli Kirby (Haverhill Rovers Ladies), Charlotte Taylor (Bournemouth Sports Ladies).

Sam’s XI management team – Vicky Neal, Kevin Knock & Rosie Boyns.

S-Tech XI squad – Eloise Hope, Amy Evans, (both Haverhill Rovers Ladies), Beth Goodman, Fran Kavanagh (both Ketton Ladies), Abigail Dowell-McGrillan, Amy Smith (both Fulbourn Institute Bluebirds), Jackie Scafide, Robyn Barlow, (both Cambridge Rangers WFC), Claire Newton, Kayleigh Churchyard (both March Town United Ladies), Donna Woodcock (Isleham United Ladies), Amy Reed, Hannah Locke, (both Cambridge City Ladies), Jade Carpenter, Sophie Marjoram (both St Ives Town Ladies Development), Katy Edwards, Jen Atherton (both Cambridge University Women), Nicola Anderson, Laura Rudd, (both Cardea Ladies), Sophie Wing, Annie Player (both Histon Ladies Reserves). Rachel Turner.

S-Tech XI management team – Kate Critchley, Jo Bull & Liz Pamplin

  It’s a charity game the substitutes managed however they want, everyone making an appearance beginning, middle or end they all played their part. Milton Colts and Histon Hornets U11s this evening’s mascots. Sam’s XI wearing white shirts, the S-tech XI wearing black. It’s the latter to kick-off the game. The goalkeepers captaining the sides at the beginning of the match Sam Isaacson for Sam’s XI, Eloise Hope for the S-Tech XI. A wide pitch the flanks are tested early on Charlene Martin on the chase for the S-Tech XI the ball played forwards Isaacson can gather. On the left for Sam’s XI, Tash Applegate bringing the ball on sends a cross into the S-Tech XI six yard box, Hope collecting the ball into her midriff.

   The first chance falling to Sam’s XI the ball fed through the centre Katie Luddy after it closing in on the left post Hope closing her down Luddy getting the ball past the keeper, runs narrowly wide of the upright. Michelle McCormack strong winning the ball in the middle for Sam’s XI played out to Laura Mills on the right, cutting inside is tackled by S-Tech XI’s Beth Goodman, the counter attack on up the left Sophie Marjoram playing the ball on for Fran Kavanagh running clear on the left, the Ketton attacker is quick, very quick taking the ball on closing in on the box opens up her body angling to put the shot in towards goal across the keeper, Isaacson though is well positioned able to safely glove the effort down under control.

   McCormack covering the ground in the centre of midfield preventing the S-Tech XI breaking. Kavanagh seeing the ball into her feet spins left sending in on for Marjoram sprinting down the wing, looking to take the ball inside is tackled, Abi Molloy winning the ball back for Sam’s XI. Goodman partnered with Claire Newton at centre back are forming a solid wall for Sam’s XI to break the more than one driving run coming to a halt before the box. Mills will take on her own shadow if she gets hold of the ball a drives forwards a jinking run takes her in past her marker sends a cross long into the box a vital header clear from the S-Tech defence with Applegate making a good run at the back post.

    A long range strike from McCormack receiving the ball left of the box 30 yards out bouncing wide across Hope’s goal. Kavanagh is away clear through the middle running to the top of the D shifts the ball inside shaping to shoot a curling effort aiming for the top corner, just over. It’s competitve two sides out there that want to win the trophy, a few nerves amongst the S-Tech XI squad, everyone wants to do well. The game played at a good pace, Kavanagh’s above average breaks with the ball on halfway cuts inside to leave the defence standing pulls the trigger from 25 yards out the strike wide races out for a goalkick.

   A corner for Sam’s XI on the right a good delivery flashing through the area, Nat Wells throwing herself at the ball can’t connect. S-Tech XI counter attack bringing the ball on down the right wing the cross swung in high near post is claimed by Isaacson. Play through the middle a good build-up the final ball sent forwards into Applegate back to goal controlling well spins left of her marker to get in on goal shooting from the top of the area the attempt straight at Hope the goalkeeper parrying the ball down before laying claim to it. 

  Change en masse for Sam’s XI everyone coming off a whole new side taking over with 30 minutes played. a few changes for the S-Tech XI, Jen Atherton, Rachel Turner, Robyn Barlow and Amy Smith joining the action. Atherton with an early strike on goal from 25 yards out testing Emma D’Costa newly arrived in goal for Sam’s XI, straight at her is unfazed. Kavanagh beating the offside trap in behind into the box D’Costa saving well with her legs as the attacker shoots. The S-Tech XI push hard as the newly arrived Sam’s XI take a few minutes to get into the game, Atherton with another distance shot right side held by D’Costa. 

  Faye Marsh with two pieces of good defensive work in quick succession in the heart of the Sam’s XI back line as the S-Tech XI press right side. Joeli Kirby and Marie Stubbings look to combine in attack for Sam’s XI right side a one two, Goodman is having none of it. Marsh across to get across Atherton as she goes after the ball down the right channel. Amy Reed gets forwards for the S-Tech XI a pacy run coming inside plays the ball into Kavanagh who wins a corner. A solid first half at the back for the S-Tech XI, Goodman is up for the set-piece a good ball in towards the top of the area the defender up well a glancing header on the ball can only direct it with of the far post.

Half-time Sam’s XI 0-0 S-Tech XI

   Changes at half-time for the S-Tech XI, 8 players coming on, Marjoram taking up the goalkeepers gloves all the play for 2nd half. Sam’s XI to get us underway, a beautiful orange full moon starting to rise over the ground. 

GOAL! The stalemate is broken early on the the 2nd half with Sam’s XI taking the lead. Pushing players forwards as they attack down the right players drawn to the ball is a great ball crossed into the box from Naomi Weir dropping near post, Ebony-Jade Rule has made a great run forwards getting in front of the defence shields the ball well sees Marie Stubbings the ball played out to her and smashed low into the back of the net 1-0.

  A good start to the 2nd half from Sam’s XI, Jenna Hulme left down the wing for Rule takes the ball on squares it inside looking for Joeli Kirby, Goodman stepping out of the S-Tech defence to intercept. Laura Rudd getting hold of the ball in the middle for the S-Tech XI carries it on before being brought down by Liv Clark. Goodman on the free-kick a good range out goes for goal nevertheless her strike over. Before the free-kick was taken a switch for the S-Tech XI Amy Evans on for Turner. Clark off for Sam’s XI, Kayleigh Whitehead joining the fun. 

  Rudd good with the ball at her feet comes forwards is stopped by Sarah Bodger for Sam’s XI. Kirby takes advantage as the S-Tech XI get caught out with a high defensive line in behind she looks to be free to take on the keeper closing on the box, Goodman recovering well a great burst of pace to close the attacker down slide in and regain possession. Weir good running on the right the ball squared in 20 yards out to Kirby helps on for Rule behind goes for the top corner the curling ball caught comfortably by Marjoram.

GOAL! Moments later though Rule has her goal doubling Sam’s XI lead, play over on the right Weir, Kirby, Stubbings all involved comes into Rule positioned top corner of the box drills it in towards goal low and hard the ball racing past the keeper into the bottom corner 2-0.

Cue a flurry of subs for Sam’s XI, Dominika Szary coming on to replace D’Costa in goal, Kirsty Geal, Stacey Kemp and Yaz Upson also on. Rudd drives forwards through the middle with the ball attempts to play Jade Carpenter through on goal a sliding tackle denying the chance. Rudd and Carpenter try again, Rudd’s run close to the attacker this time pushed into her helped on as Rudd gets in on goal shoots outside the area, Szary parrying the shot down. Atherton returning to the field for the S-Tech XI. 

  Geal with a pacy run with the ball on the left her cross in defended well by Jackie Scafide. Vicky Houchin comes on for Sam’s XI. Mills also returning for Weir. Mills with the ball on the right flashes a cross in across the top of the six yard box, Upson can’t connect with the ball. Geal carrying the ball on the left swung in cleared by Goodman. Hannah Lock comes on for the S-Tech XI replacing Carpenter. Isaacson to in an outfield position this time for Emma Clark. Amy Smith given the ball out right into space crosses into the box the ball held by Szary. 

  S-Tech XI pushing players on now looking to pull a goal back, good work across the top of the area Evans coming central plays the ball on into Rudd left of the D shoots, Szary behind the ball saving comfortably. Sam’s XI break the ball left Geal running forwards pushed on for Upson shooting from the angle Marjoram positioned near post making the save. Mills attacking right in the clear closing in on the box Marjoram coming out to meet her the ball bouncing past the keeper across the face of goal Upson waiting far post, Goodman getting back to hook the ball clear. Amy Reed coming back on for the S-Tech XI.   

GOAL! Sam’s XI get a 3rd goal. Hit their opponents on the counter attack Mills right bringing the ball on plays the past infield to Isaacson central 25 yards out a great flick on as Mills continues her run to the byline her cross inch perfect across the face of goal, Yaz Upson there scores from 3 inches out! 3-0. Not long left now.

GOAL! Cue the fightback the S-Tech XI aren’t down yet pulls a goal back straight away. Pushing players on from the restart Reed on it central jinks left right, thinks about shooting opts instead to fire the ball out wide right to Evans, Reed running on into the box as Evans swings in the cross near side Reed tries to bring under control Atherton right there with her taking the ball and sending it flying in past the keeper 3-1.

 Emma Roberts entering the game in the closing minutes as Sam’s XI are pushed right back the S-Tech side attacking at the end shape lost there isn’t much time left on the clock. Reed with the ball on the right no way past Molloy. McCormack back on eases Atherton off the ball as she tries to carry the ball into the box.

GOAL! S-Tech XI grab another late goal is a well worked individual strike by Amy Reed picking the ball up 25 out drifts infield across the D right to left wrapping her left foot around the ball sends a looping strike up and over the keeper, dropping under the bar into the back of the net 3-2. 

  No nervy finish however as the referee blows the final whistle and Sam’s XI squad runs onto the pitch in celebration everyone bundling in on Isaacson as her side win the Kick Cancer Cup for the very first time.  

Full time Sam’s XI 3-2 S-Tech XI

  A memorable win for Sam’s XI squad in an entertaining game the 3 goal lead needed in the finish watched in front of 438. An enjoyable night everyone had a great time enjoyed it myself even won a prize on the raffle. The real winners of course the two charities this event was all in aid over. No Player of the Match award tonight instead a thank you to everyone who gave up their time be it to play, officiate, volunteer and support. 

 My thanks to everyone who assisted with the squad details tonight. All photographs used in this report are credited to and copyrighted by Lightside Photography and I really appreciate being able to showcase a few in the report.