Chapman delighted as Hillians reach semi-finals

Burgess Hill manager Ian Chapman
Burgess Hill manager Ian Chapman

BURGESS HILL Football Club manager Ian Chapman was delighted to reach the semi-finals of the Sussex Senior Cup last night.

The Hillians won 3-0 at Worthing with goals from Callum Saunders, Rob O’Toole and Lukas Jones to join Whitehawk, Lewes and Loxwood in the hat for the last four.

Chapman was pleased with his side’s performance and said: “We were resolute. The pitch wasn’t great - and neither is ours - but it made it difficult to play, so we decided we’d play a little bit more direct than we wanted to.

“In saying that, we got the second goal from a long throw and the first one is a bit of magic from Callum, with a little turn and finish.

“In all, we’re absolutely delighted to be through. Hinsh (Adam Hinshelwood) is doing a great job here, they’ve got some great kids and they play the right way.

“They always make it hard for you and you’ve got to be alert all the time.

“I just thought we had that bit of experience and defended well and, eventually, the third goal kills the game. At 2-0, it was in the balance all the time.”

Hillians had several players unavailable for the game, owing to illness or unavailability, and Chapman said: “We had eight or nine players unavailable but that just tells me that we’ve put a decent squad together this year to put in a strong performance like that.

“What capped it all for me was that we brought along a young lad from the youth team tonight, Lukas, put him on for the last ten minutes and he got a goal and looked great.

“We’re chuffed with that and, hopefully, it’s another one off the conveyer belt for us.”

Chapman, a former player and coach at Brighton & Hove Albion, is now just one game away from taking his side to the final at The Amex.

On getting through to the semi-finals, Chapman said: “It’s massive but it’s nothing yet because we’ve still got another game.

“The draw is on Saturday, we know who’s in there and everyone will be trying to avoid Whitehawk, I assume, but any game is going to be hard.

“I want to win the league, that’s my priority and what we’re really going for.

“We’ve still got 19 games to go for that, so it’s just game by game. We’ll put this competition to bed for a few weeks and we’ll now worry about Tooting on Saturday, which is going to be a really hard game and that’s what we’ve got our eye on.”