Madejski Stadium awaits after Wokingham victoryBy Adam Lee
April 16, 2009
Wokingham & Emmbrook will play at Madejski Stadium for the first time in the club’s history.
The Satsumas booked their place in the final of the Reading Evening Post Senior Cup after they saw offReading Senior Division side Sandhurst Devels 3-1 at Lowther Road on Saturday.
The final will take place at the home of Reading FC on May 14 (kick off 7pm).
In wet conditions, Wokingham went behind early on to Devels, but a coolly-taken Richard Bland hat-trick sent Wokingham through.
With the likes of Sam Whiting, Sam Duffelen and Shaun Wanklyn all missing from the squad, Wokingham were expecting a tough time from in-form Devels.
It took a while for Wokingham to get into their stride, but after threatening to go two or three up in the opening few minutes, Sandhurst struggled to make any more clear-cut chances on Kane Roberts’ goal.
Satsumas boss Wayne Wanklyn was delighted with the performance, and believes a trip to Madejski Stadium next month will be a fitting end to a season that has exceeded all expectations.
Wokingham were expected to compete in the top half of the Hellenic Division 1 East table at the start of the season.
However, after a storming start to the campaign, which saw them play their first game at their new Cantley Park ground, Wokingham have not been out of the top three all season.
Although Wokingham were handed a set-back in their bid to make the facilities at Cantley equal to the club’s ambition, Wanklyn believes the club is in a perfect position on the pitch to begin climbing the non-league pyramid once again.
“This is great for the lads,” said Wanklyn.
“They’ve put a lot of work in this year, we’ll finish in the top three or four in the league and to finish with a cup final at Reading will be really good.
“We’ve had a great year.
“To be in the hunt all season shows that the club has come on fantastically well.
“We’ve got a great youth team and on the pitch the first team is in really good shape.
“I’ve been delighted with the progress at the club.
“I know what we need to now make the step up.
“We need a couple of players in the right areas, but there’s not much wrong with the squad.
“What you want is competition and we’ve got competition in all areas at the moment.
“I had seven players out today and to put out a squad of 16 just shows the strength we’ve got here.”
Wanklyn also paid testament to Saturday’s opposition, Sandhurst Devels.
Devels transferred to the Reading Senior Division last summer with high hopes, and after a poor start, have begun to show their potential.
However, after a gutsy display from Devels, Wokingham’s speed, class and fitness told as they ran away with the game in the final 20 minutes.
“It’s a semi-final and we knew they were going to push us and compete and they did that really, really well and to be honest they shaded the first half,” said Wanklyn.
“In the second half we needed to pick our game up and score some goals.
“We wore them down in the end and the pace we had up front caused them problems and we were just too hot for them in the final third – Blandy (Richard Bland) was fantastic.”