Bexhill celebrate dramatic late winner

Craig Ottley scored a brace of free kicks in Bexhill United's 3-2 victory over Seaford Town. Picture courtesy Mark Killy
Craig Ottley scored a brace of free kicks in Bexhill United's 3-2 victory over Seaford Town. Picture courtesy Mark Killy
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Bexhill United Football Club preserved its interest in this season’s knockout competitions with a dramatic victory on Tuesday night.

Craig Ottley’s added time put Bexhill through to the Macron Store Southern Combination Football League Division One Challenge Cup quarter-finals after they had earlier seen a two-goal lead cancelled out.

Bexhill were missing around eight players and travelled along the coast with just 12 men, but produced their best first half performance for a long time.

Ottley put them ahead with a powerful 30-yard free kick which the Seaford goalkeeper could only palm into the roof of the net.

Only a goal-line clearance after Corey Wheeler scooped the ball over the goalkeeper prevented the visitors being further ahead at the break.

Bexhill were fantastic in the second half and doubled their advantage through a lovely finish by Wheeler after a neat bit of play on the edge of the box.

Corey Wheeler netted Bexhill United's second goal against Seaford Town.

Corey Wheeler netted Bexhill United's second goal against Seaford Town.

Bexhill looked firmly in control of an enjoyable game to watch, but their former player David Pugh pulled one back with Seaford’s first real shot of the second half.

The visitors wobbled for the next five or 10 minutes and Seaford’s sudden pressure resulted in Pugh scoring an 88th minute equaliser.

With extra-time looming, Bexhill midfielder Kyle Holden beat several players before being brought down just outside the area and Ottley smashed the resulting free kick into the top corner.

The game ended on a bit of a sour note with an ambulance being called for a Seaford player following an accidental collision with Bexhill goalkeeper Dan Rose.

Bexhill’s reward is a last eight trip to Langney Wanderers on a date to be announced.

Bexhill: Rose; Robertson, A. Trickett, McFarlane, Ottley; Gouet, Holden, B. Trickett, Giles (Miah), Wheeler; Cuddington.

See our comprehensive sports coverage in the Observer every Friday.

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