Round up

Just three games on Tuesday all postponed from the previous week. Bashley collected the first silverware of the season with a three two victory over Verwood Town in the Bournemouth Senior Cup Final at Christchurch. Kabba Jack scored twice for the winners as did James Guthrie for Verwood as Bashley put their name on the trophy for the fifth time, having last won it in 1994. An attendance in excess of 200 was no doubt welcomed by the organisers having re-constituted the Competition this season after a fourteen year break. Bemerton Heath Harlequins moved into the last four of the Wiltshire Senior Cup with a three goal victory over Wiltshire League side Bremhill, who beat Amesbury Town in the previous round, with Jake Rawkins claiming all three goals whilst the third game marked the first appearance of the North Hants Cup on the schedule this season. As is sometimes the case in these Competitions the draw through up a total mismatch with Andover Town coasting to an eight nil victory over Winchester Castle Reserves with six different names on the scoresheet. One game on Wednesday with a decisive result in the North Hampshire derby at Whitchurch as Tadley Calleva ran out winners by five goals to one – two goals for Paul Coventry against his former Club  and four goals in the first 24 minutes – and took over at the top of the Division One table. In the earlier meeting between the two Clubs at Barlows Park Tadley scored five without reply and in doing so re-confirmed their dominance. A rare game on a Thursday as US Portsmouth made it five wins in a row with a three one defeat of Folland Sports and moved up to sixth place in the table. Two Premier Division games on Friday with Hamble Club and Sholing sharing two goals and the points as the visitors extended their unbeaten run to eleven matches and remain in third place overnight. AFC Portchester have few peers when it comes to selling and promoting fixtures and proved that again by attracting a crowd approaching 300 for the game with Fareham Town. Unfortunately “The Creeksiders” had not read the script and a Scott Hamilton goal, the only one of the game, gave them the three points and extended their unbeaten run to five matches. However it was hardly a “Festive” Friday as the two games between them collected fifteen cautions and three dismissals.

On to Saturday and two postponements because of wet pitches – Horndean versus Baffins Milton Rovers in the Premier Division and the Waterside derby between Fawley AFC and Hythe and Dibden in Division One. Andover Town maintained their lead at the top of the Premier Division with a two goal win over a stubborn Shaftesbury side at the Portway and a Sam Griffin hat trick, the only one of the day, secured a three goal victory for second place Blackfield and Langley over Bournemouth, With Sholing dropping two points the previous evening Hamworthy United took over third spot after their two one defeat of Amesbury Town, their sixth win in seven matches. Lymington Town were held to a two all draw by Newport (IOW) at the Sports Ground – a good point for the visitors for whom Charlie Urry scored both goals  – while two Craig Harding goals helped Alresford Town to a three one win over the luckless Petersfield Town who stay marooned at the bottom of the table. The biggest attendance of the day, 156 – and thanks that all the attendances were reported – was at Brockenhurst where the “Forest Derby” with Bashley finished all square with Kabba Jack’s strike for the home side being cancelled out by a late second half Mark Barker penalty. Portland United travelled to Bemerton and the nil nil draw was the fifth game in a row that they have taken just the one point whilst Cowes Sports opened the scoring at Team Solent before going down by the odd goal in five. So Christmas arrives with Andover Town and Blackfield and Langley looking secure at the top of the table whilst Newport (IOW), Amesbury Town and Petersfield Town are in need of a change of fortune at the bottom.

The top match in a reduced Division One programme was at Charlton where Andover New Street bounced back from last week’s defeat to come from behind to beat fellow promotion contenders Romsey Town three two with Callum Sweeney scoring twice. AFC Stoneham climbed in to third place with a four goal defeat of Verwood Town and two goals from Chae Sykes helped Laverstock and Ford to a three two victory over Wiltshire rivals Downton. Totton and Eling made it four wins in a row with four different names on the score sheet in the four nil victory over Alton – the visitors again failing to replicate their home form on their travels – and New Milton Town and Ringwood Town shared two goals and the points at Fawcett Field with Steve Flynn, almost inevitably, claiming the home side’s goal. With Christchurch not in action Tadley Calleva’s midweek win at Whitchurch means they top the table on goal difference from Andover New Street but just four points cover the top six sides.

Happy Christmas to all.