City now just waiting for the top two to falter (again)
Since restarting in the New Year, the Men’s 1st XI have pretty much done all they could to dramatically jump back into contention for the promotion into the National League.
The superb win against Harleston Magpies last Saturday was the sixth win in a row and the eleventh match unbeaten. In addition to the massive win over strugglers Ramgarhia, the top two in the league have been comprehensively beaten in the first matches back in 2014.
The East Prem A Division is shaping up to be a three horse race, and City themselves know that there are a lot of teams in the league who are difficult to beat. As City travel to Dereham on Saturday, Harleston host West Herts.
In terms of team news, Shane Vincent should return and fan’s favourite Tom Hagues expects to play again this week testing his fitness in a return to action lower down the club. Scoring certainly no longer appear to be a problem for City and in particular, it was good to see young Tom Pinder (left) and veteran Simon Shorter back in the goals again.
In term of the opposition, City will not underestimate Dereham on their home pitch. They certainly expect them to be a tough test and know that they will need to play well again to keep up the run that is so crucial in building the pressure on the Magpies and Stags.
The Ladies 1st team this week have a big home game against Saffron Walden, the Division 1N league leaders. Unfortunately, due to a quirk of the Bretton Gate fixture scheduling computer, there is not a slot available for them at home at Bretton Gate, so they are playing off site in an 11.30am pushback at the Thomas Deacon Academy.
Back at the Gate though, the big home Men’s match is the in-form Men’s 2nd team who host Ipswich at 2.30pm. This was a Prem A fixture last season, but only Ipswich now have a faint hope to return to the top division, although they do have some way to go to catch the front runners in Prem B.
The game that is probably the biggest in the season so far, in terms of a step to secure promotion is the 1pm pushback, where the Men’s 4th team (right) host Cambridge City 4ths. With long term title contenders Cambridge South faltering badly, Neil Lake’s team have opened a gap from their promotion rivals. Beating Cambridge City would further stretch the lead, and with games running out to catch them, Lakey would have one big toe poking into Division 2.
The other minor mens and ladies teams (Men’s 6th, 9th and Ladies 4th) have home games, so would also appreciate your support on the fence of Bretton Gate too I am sure.
The remaining fixtures are:
- 10am – Men’s 8th XI v Bourne Deeping 4ths (Thomas Deacon Academy)
- 10am – Men’s 9th XI v Leadenham 2nds (Bretton Gate)
- 11:30am – Men’s 6th XI v Alford & District 1sts (Bretton Gate)
- 1pm – Ladies 2nd XI v Shefford & Sandy 1sts (away)
- 1pm – Men’s 5th XI v Long Sutton 2nds (away)
- 2:30pm – Men’s 3rd XI v Waltham Forest 1sts(away)
- 2:30pm – Men’s 7th XI v March Town 2nds (away)
- 3pm – Ladies 3rd XI v Kettering 3rds (away – friendly match)
- 3.30pm – Mens Veterans XI v Newmarket 2nds (away)
- 4pm – Ladies 4th XI v Alford & District 2nds (Bretton Gate)