WEEK 18 REVIEW: Round-up of Saturday's league and cup action
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The penultimate Fenton Cup quarter-finalist was decided on Saturday with two of Division One’s outfits coming together with Colebrook Royals Reserves travelling to face Forest Green in Leyton. Despite their struggles in the league so far this term, Forest Green put in a sparkling performance to run out 5-0 victors, booking a home quarter final against London Cranes next month.
DIVISION ONE CUP
There were two first round clashes to open the Division One Cup this season with the current holders, Three Colts, opening their defence on the road away at East Ham Inter. Clearly keen to keep their hands on the trophy for a while longer, Colts cruised to a 6-1 win with Fabian Donovan scoring a hat-trick and efforts from Jason Fox, David Watson and Julian Bryant rounding off a top performance.
Joining Colts in the quarter-finals will be Cowley Community who took on the current Division Three Cup holders in the form of Wapping in their own first round clash at Wanstead Flats. Yacine Taladjati got on the scoresheet for Wapping but a Conor Harrington brace and a Sean Kelly effort were more than enough to secure Cowley’s place in the next round.
DIVISION TWO CUP
There was somewhat of a cup shock in the Division Two Cup competition as the opening match of this season’s competition saw ninth placed Lionside continue their solid recent form with a 3-1 home victory against Romford rivals, Flyers, who are fifth in the table. Proving that league placings often mean little in the cup, Jack Barry grabbed the Flyers goal but his effort was ultimately in vain.
DIVISION FOUR CUP
There were three matches in the Division Four Cup group stages this week with Dagenham United Reserves soaring to the top of Group A with another scintillating victory over Wanstead Warriors in consecutive weeks. After scoring ten last time out, this time it was twelve as they recorded a 12-2 win over Warriors. Jeffrey Nketia scored another five goals to add to five last week with Chris Mascall also getting in on the action with a hat-trick. Luke Sargent, Nana Agyekum, Lee Green and Danny Walker also scored to render Wanstead efforts from George Montgomery and Callum Saisbury as mere consolation.
In Group B, it is wide open with three sides now on three points each with just a couple of matches to go. Royal Forest have gone top of the pile as they opened their cup campaign with a 6-1 away victory at Newham Royals. Martin Cannon and Luke Charge both scored twice with a Terence Elliott-Cooper effort completing the win.
Haver Town Reserves also opened their cup quest with a big win as they beat Brentwood United Reserves, the only side to derail them in the league so far this season, by a 5-0 scoreline to hand out some retribution for that win. Michael Brown continues to find the net, bagging a hat-trick with Ronnie Coules and Jack Phillips netting the other efforts.
There were some huge results in the Premier Division on Saturday affecting the top of the table with the reigning champions, Jolof Sports, going down to a narrow 4-3 defeat after a terrific contest in East Ham. They took on Old Esthameians in a classic match between last season’s big rivals. In a match which toed and froed between the sides, E’s just nicked it to move fourth in the table, level with their opponents.
Also at the top end of the table there was an incredible match at The Grange where league leaders, Colebrook Royals, played host to West Essex Reserves with them looking to extend their lead at the top. It looked as though they wouldn’t be getting anything from the game when Izunna Ogedi-Uzokwe made his customary goal scoring contribution with a hat-trick but three Royals levellers stunned West and meant the sides had a share the points in a 3-3 draw.
Those results gave opportunities to the mid-table sides to close the gap on the title chasing sides with London Cranes winning on the road away at Blue Marlin, completing a 3-0 win which leaves the hosts still looking over their shoulder. Shafik Walusimbi was the hero, scoring all of his side’s goals in a win that moves them to within two points of the side above them.
Also closing the gap were Lopes Tavares London who were the visitors to Flanders in East Ham to take on London APSA in a crucial derby match for both sides. In a tightly contested match, it was Lopes who returned to winning ways this weekend, edging the contest by the odd goal to win 2-1 and remain in touch with the sides above them.
The match of the day down in Division Two over the weekend was in Chadwell Heath where third placed ACD United took on the unbeaten Rainham Working Mens Club in their top end of the table clash. Brandon Khan got himself on the scoresheet for Rainham but ACD goals from the boots of Liam Porter, Robert Clark and Scott Perkins confirmed a 3-1 win and put a real spanner in the works of the title chase for the remainder of the season.
There was a tremendous fightback in Plaistow in the match between Newham United Reserves and Lymore Gardens. The match saw Newham race out of the blocks and take a 2-0 lead against their county cup quarter-final bound opponents. But Lymore Gardens showed their metal with Bradley Williams, Dushane Powell and Eugene Goumou scoring the three comeback goals that won them the match 3-2.
There was another thriller in the area as Inter Plaistow took on St Francis at West Ham Memorial Park in a real relegation six pointer in Division Two. Steven Porter, Robert Evans and John Stevens all found the back of the net for the Saints but Inter replied with goals from Rakeim Blaize, Ben Nyman, Samuel Garrett and Tito Brazel to edge a thrilling match 4-3 eventually to move away from danger at the foot of the table.
In Division Three, Kitroom served noticed of their intention to challenge for promotion with a terrific win on the road away at Old Esthameians Reserves on Saturday. Leon Bernard scored twice for Kitroom with Omar Wilson and Gavin Merrifield efforts cancelling out a Thomas Boomsma goal for Old E’s to put a dent in their own promotion hopes.
There was a first win of 2018 for Glendale who returned to action with a comfortable victory against Custom House Community. The wily old John Taylor rolled back the years to score a hat-trick with Khari Pobi and Abbas Khabbaz efforts completing a 5-2 win that sees them move up a place to sixth position in the division.
Completing the division’s football action, there was another good result for Frenford A who continue to show their steel after a very difficult start to the season. This weekend they took on fifth-placed Chingford Harriers with the sides battling to a 1-1 to take a share of the spoils. Joel Opara continued his rich vein of form in front of goal with another effort, levelled up by Peter Shawyer’s goal for the Harriers.
There was just the one match down in Division Four with Debden Park taking on rivals Brook City in their clash in Debden. Brandon Eusden got himself on the Park scoresheet with a goal but his effort was levelled by City as the sides had to settle for a 1-1 draw on the day.
There was a very interesting match in this Saturday’s London Junior Cup fourth round as Division One outfit, Sporting Hackney Reserves, were the hosts as Division Three title-chasing FC Baresi were in town to battle for a place in the quarter-finals of the competition. The match was well contested with just a single goal to separate the teams as FC Baresi shocked their higher league opponents to win 1-0. They now face a tough trip to Wimbledon League based Goldfingers in the last eight but will be high on confidence.
And in the day’s other fourth round county cup action, Singh Sabha Barking made the long trip to Mid Essex League based Writtle Manor in the Essex Junior Trophy in a delayed clash from last weekend. The Division One side will have enjoyed their journey back down the A12 however with a terrific 3-1 win to confirm a quarter-final place away at Sandon Royals in a fortnight.