A Feast of Five-a-side Football
Friday, 07 May 2010
Over forty teams from primary schools from Bolton and as far away as Preston, Manchester, Wigan and Leigh took part in the Crusader Cup, a five-a-side tournament organised and hosted by Bolton School.
Teams competed in three competitions: an A League, a B League and a Girls' League.
Initial group matches were played to decide which teams would go through to the knockout stages for the chance to fight it out for a place in the final. Despite gloomy skies, the weather held out and boys, girls and parents enjoyed playing and watching some wonderful football.
The Girls' League concluded first and saw St Paul's Astley Bridge overcome St Thomas Canterbury, 3-0. The B League was won by Sacred Heart, who beat Horwich Parish 3-1 in their final. The winners of the A League were St Philips who, in a closely contested final, edged a victory over Johnson Fold 3-2.
The event is ordinarily organised by Bolton School's Director of Coaching and ex-Bolton Wanderers goalkeeper, Keith Branagan, but this year he was unavailable due to a knee injury. Mr Rich and Mr Prentki gallantly stepped up and ran the competition along with the help of the School's Year 11, 12 and 13 football teams. Mr Rich handed over the trophy to the winners and said: "I can honestly say that I have witnessed some fantastic football this afternoon and watching the winning celebrations one sees how seriously these primary school pupils take their football! I'd like to offer a massive thank you to our own lads too, who have selflessly dedicated their free time and helped make the running of this event possible."