MATCH VERDICT: Leckie on the spot to seal semi-final win
It wasn’t pretty – but all that counts is a place in the cup final.
Two first-half goals proved enough for Holbeach United – although they were pushed all the way by Bourne Town.
Matt Warfield’s long-range drive was deflected in to put the Tigers ahead.
Lewis Leckie converted a penalty after he had been fouled by Wakes captain Alex Brown.
Jack Bottreill’s header gave hope for Bourne but they just missed out.
Holbeach will face northern section winners Cleethorpes Town or Grimsby Borough in the final to be played at Lincoln City’s Sincil Bank.
Boss Seb Hayes admitted: “It was a horrible game and we would have liked to play much better.
“We didn’t under-estimate Bourne because we knew it was going to be hard out there.
“You want to put on a good performance and reach the cup final.
“Even when we were on top, we couldn’t put them away.
I don’t think any Holbeach players appealed for a penalty but there were a lot of poor decisions by the officials.
“It could have been more comfortable in the end but we came under pressure because we didn’t manage the game well enough.
“Although they didn’t really create a chance of an equaliser, they hurt us by putting balls in good areas. We gave away silly free-kicks by losing our shape and discipline.
“We can be a good side but when we drop our standards, we are average.
“We can’t keep doing that if we want to win trophies and finish near the top of the table.
“The disappointment in the dressing room on Wednesday night speaks volumes.
“It felt very flat – despite reaching a cup final – and a lot of the players were unhappy with the performance.
“All credit to Bourne who gave us a harder game than we get at times in the UCL Premier Division.
“They never gave up but we have got to be so much better by 40 to 50 per cent.”
Bourne joint bosses Jimmy McDonnell and Phil Gadsby were left with a mixture of pride and disappointment.
McDonnell said: “To be honest, we have done wonders to get to this stage and we gave it a real go to the final whistle.
“But I felt that was the worst refereeing performance I’ve seen.
“I don’t think any Holbeach players appealed for a penalty but there were a lot of poor decisions by the officials.
“I’m not making excuses but I’d feel ashamed to pick up any money for that performance as one of the officials.
“It felt like nobody wanted us to get into the final as the underdogs.
“We are not a physical side but we tried to pass the ball. The players put in a shift but Holbeach were a little bit better to get over the line.”
Gadsby added: “We were unlucky in a few moments but good luck to Holbeach in the final.
“At 2-0, it could have been different. We are proud of our performance in a close game where we have not let anyone down.”
4-2-3-1: Brown; Elger, Flood (sub A Moss 4 mins), Cooke, Cooper; Smitheringale, Bottreill; Goldson-Williams, Rothery (sub Humphries 68 mins), Avis (sub Pearce 56 mins); Nelson. Subs not used: Corby, Cardall.
4-4-2: Drury; Harker, Tinkler, Sanders, Jackson; Zuerner, Dougill, Warfield (sub Fenton h-t), Griffiths; Bird, Leckie. Subs not used: Davies, East, Edey, Cartwright.
Warfield (24 mins, 0-1); Leckie pen (38 mins, 0-2); Bottreill (71 mins, 1-2).