Striker Corie Andrews bagged a second-half brace after goalkeeper Matthew Cox had saved two penalties, as Wimbledon booked a place in the London Senior Cup final at Plough Lane this afternoon.
Cox saved from Marcel Barrington midway through the first half and then denied former Charlton striker Kevin Lisbie after the break, before Andrews' double kept the Dons on course for a seventh London Senior Cup triumph with a 2-0 victory over Isthmian League Cray Valley Paper Mills.
First team coach Rob Tuvey made one change to the starting line-up with Obed Yeboah coming in for Quaine Bartley, one of the four goal scorers in the midweek 4-0 victory over Cockfosters in the quarter final.
Andrews led the line for the young Dons, with a couple of early opportunities, while at the other end young England goalkeeper Cox got an early touch of the ball, as he got down to make a relatively easy save from Marcel Barrington. Wimbledon kept up their early pressure with David Kawa and Yeboah backing up Andrews.
The visitors did have the ball in the back of the Wimbledon net on the quarter of the hour mark, with Ade Adeyemo converting from a cross from the experienced Lisbie, but the goal was ruled out for offside. With 23 minutes on the clock, Cray Valley PM had a chance to take the lead following a handball in the penalty area. Cox got down and judged it well, by making the save with his legs to deny Barrington from the spot.
Although Wimbledon had good opportunities in their build-up play, it was the visitors who’d had the more clear-cut chances in the first quarter of the game. With half-time looming, the young Dons applied more pressure. Adjei-Hersey had an effort blocked inside the area and Elliott Bolton glanced the ball wide from a header.
It remained goalless at the break, with the brightly attired Cox catching the eye in the Wimbledon goal for his penalty-saving heroics. The visitors had certainly played their part in a competitive first half.
Marcel Campbell replaced Yeboah at the start of the second half for Wimbledon. Adjei-Hersey again stood out as the young Dons went in search of the opening goal, but it was the visitors who again had the opportunity to open the scoring from the penalty spot with ten second-half minutes gone. Jack Madelin tripped Kyreece Lisbie inside the area, but his father Kevin failed to get the better of Cox (pictured) who made his second spot-kick save of the afternoon.
Just after the hour mark, Isaac Ogundere and Kwaku Frimpong replaced Paul Osew and Bolton for Wimbledon, as the young Dons tried to make the most of having been kept in the game by the increasing vocal presence of Cox in goal. Barrington flicked the ball over Cox, with eighteen minutes to go from inside the area, but Wimbledon managed to clear.
There was plenty of attacking intent from both sides going into the final fifteen minutes. David Kawa and then Ogundere in quick succession were both denied by the Cray Valley back line. Goalkeeper Joe Docherty was finally beaten when Frimpong’s downward header in the area broke for Andrews who netted with eleven minutes to go.
Victory was assured with a minute of regulation time remaining, as Andrews sealed Wimbledon’s place in the final with a brilliant turn and shot to beat Docherty for his second.
AFC Wimbledon: Cox, Osew (Ogundere), Mason, Sutcliffe, Madelin, Bolton (Frimpong), Alli, Yeboah (Campbell), Adjei-Hersey, Andrews, Kawa.
Pic credit: Trevor Williams.