QEGS win first All Northern Final 

Difficulties over arranging a venue meant that the 1996 Final did not take place until the Summer Term, Chester City being the venue at the end of April. Michael McVerry headed QEGS in front after only six minutes and this proved to be sufficient to give QEGS the cup in coach David Hopkinson’s final match in charge, an extra satisfaction being his son Stephen’s steady performance at left-back. 

Q.E.G.S.: J. Haworth, C. Connolly, S. Hopkinson, M. Peterson, S. Gough, I. Simpson, O. Pimblett, D. Maclean (sub: M. Collins), B. Fayomi, S. Penswick (capt.), M. McVerry. 
Bury G.S.: I. Willcock, G. Kirkby (sub: C. Tomkinson), P. Grindod (sub: R. Lingard), R. Smith, M. Cockcroft, A. Lawton, D. Watson (sub: P. Jeffries), Z. Mosawy, I. Hyde (capt.), R. Rajasooriyar, S. Tuke. 
Scorer: Q.E.G.S.: McVerry. 

Referee: Mr. S. Lodge (Barnsley) 
Attendance: 800 
Guest of Honour: Ron Clayton (ex-Blackburn Rovers and England). 
Venue: The Deva Stadium, Chester City FC 

Giant defender Simon Gough of QEGS heads away a Bury attack (left). Bury on the attack in the second half (right). 

Surprise team of the season were Latymer Upper, who appeared to offer little threat when they only just managed to sneak past Oswestry in the first round but, after hammering Kimbolton 4-0, they surprised Lancing, beating them on penalties, and then put up an outstanding display away at QEGS Blackburn in the semi-finals, only losing in extra-time. 

Nobody could have faced a tougher journey to the Final than Bury GS who overcame Batley GS in extra-time in the first round, then had to defeat another northern rival, St. Bede’s, before facing the long trip to Sussex to take on Ardingly, finalists in both the previous two seasons. A 1-0 there was an outstanding result and so they deserved their slice of luck when it took penalties to overcome Brentwood in the semi-final. This was tough on Brentwood who had now lost twice in the semi-finals on penalties. 

Meanwhile QEGS had been in rampant form, scoring 13 goals in the first two rounds and then gaining an excellent away win at Manchester G.S. in the quarter-final. However, dark horses Latymer Upper, who had upset Lancing on penalties in the quarter-finals, ran QEGS very close in the semi-finals, taking them to extra-time at Lammack before the northerners edged through to the final. 


First Round: 

Bolton 3 Bradfield 0 
Bury GS 3 Batley GS 2 aet 
Charterhouse 0 Westminster 1 
Eton 0 Lancing 3 
Forest 6 Wellingborough 1 
Highgate 4 Hulme GS 5 
KES Witley 0 Manchester GS 3 
King’s, Chester 0 Wolverhampton GS 1 
Latymer Upper 3 Oswestry 2 
Malvern 0 Ardingly 1 
QEGS Blackburn 5 St. Edmund’s, Cantab. 0 
Repton 2 Winchester 2 aet (Winchester won 4-3 on pens) 
St. Bede’s, Manchester 3 Aldenham 0 
Shrewsbury 0 Brentwood 4 
Byes Chigwell, Kimbolton 

Second Round: 
Arsenal 2 Forest 0 
Bolton 1 Manchester GS 2 aet 
Bury GS 2 St. Bede’s, Manchester 1 
Hulme GS 1 Wolverhampton GS 1 aet (Hulme 5-4 won on pens) 
Lancing 4 Chigwell 1 
Latymer Upper 4 Kimbolton 0 
QEGS Blackburn 8 Winchester 2 
Westminster 0 Brentwood 1 

Third Round: 
Ardingly 0 Bury GS 1 
Brentwood 2 Hulme GS 1 
Lancing 2 Latymer Upper 2 aet (Latymer Upper won 4-3 on pens) 
Manchester GS 1 QEGS Blackburn 2 

QEGS Blackburn 2 Latymer Upper 1 aet 
Bury GS 1 Brentwood 1 aet (Bury GS won 4-1 on pens) 

QEGS Blackburn 1 Bury GS 0 

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