News and Match Reports

27th November 2021 - Henbury get win over Little Stoke

Ron Holpin


A really valuable win for Henbury who played hosts to Little Stoke this windy afternoon. The visitors had the best of the opening exchanges, dominating the first 15 minutes of the game and testing the Henbury defence who stayed resolute. On 30 minutes Little Stoke had the ball in the net but it was ruled out for a narrow offside. 3 minutes later Little Stoke had a great chance to take the lead after the impressive Jaiden Holver ran into the box and Sean Heal made an effort to stop him but it resulted in a spot kick. Stand in goalkeeper Jack Bebbington made a great save from Kahlil Lamir spot kick and the rebound was cleared by the Henbury defence. The hard-working Kane Manning’s and his strike partner Andrew Dickinson had good chances for Henbury but the Little Stoke keeper denied them each time and the score remained 0-0 at half time. On 60 mins Henbury took the lead when Brandon Dack turned in a Sean Heal free kick from close range, narrowly avoiding the off-side. A calm finish in the 75th minute from Matt Jones made it 2-0 to Henbury who went on to manage the last 15 minutes of the game and take a welcome 3 points.

Bromley Heath United almost upset the apple cart at home to Shirehampton taking the lead twice before having to settle for a 2-2 draw. The home side took the lead on 7 minutes when Alvin Nurse was clean through on goal but the Shirehampton keeper brought him down just outside the box. The free kick was taken by Luke Bessell who neatly planted the ball into the top corner of the Shire net. Following the goal Bromley almost got a second but Alvin Nurse’s shot struck the crossbar. On 36 minutes Shire levelled the score when James Kenway was put through on goal and struck a hard low shot across the Bromley keeper into the far corner. Just 2 minutes into the second half Bromley retook the lead when Antonio Nurse broke into the box hit his shot goalwards the ball was handled by a Shire defender and a penalty was given. Alvin Nurse coolly fired the spot kick past the Shire keeper to make it 2-1. The visitors hit back again and from a corner the ball dropped into the box and after a scrambling Matt McCall stabbed the ball home. Both sides had further chance with Bromley clearing off the line twice.

English Bicknor pulled off a surprise result at Frampton United winning 1-0. Bicknors Blains Smith had a great chance to open the scoring on 12 minutes but shot narrowly wide. Then on 26 minutes Frampton’s keeper Fraser Wilson brought off a good save to deny James Davis. In the 52nd minute Manolo Espada’s shot from a free kick was pushed over the bar by keeper Craig Edwards. Bicknor scored on 74 minutes from a cross into the box that was headed in by Greg Tynan that turned out to be the winner and three very good points for the visitors.

Ruardean Hill Rangers came from be hind in their home game with Gala Wilton to win 2-1 on a very blustery afternoon. Harry Clark should have put the home side into the lead early on but his effort was very well saved by the Gala keeper. For the next 30 minutes honours were even then in the 32nd minute Gala’s Dan Gaynor broke the deadlock. Rangers replied quickly and equalised just 2 minutes later when some good play between Luke Johnson and Steve Clark resulted in a shot being parried by the Gala keeper but Steve Clark knocked in the rebound. Rangers grabbed the winner in the 70th minute when Harry Clark netted.

Patchway Town had a very convincing win at home to Hanham Athletic with a 5-0 result. Hanham’s keeper Ashley Bamford was in action right from the start and saved well from Matt Davies after 2 minutes and Troy Simpson a few minutes later. The home side were relentless and Bamford was in action again in the 11th and 12th minutes pulling off saves from Davies and Fin Thompson. Patchway went ahead on 25 minutes after a scramble in the box and Troy Simpson getting the final touch. The lead went to 2-0 just 2 minutes later when Matt Davies broke down the right and found the back of the visitor’s net from a tight angle. Hanham’s best chance fell to Jack Knight on 41 minutes with a thunderbolt of a shot that was well saved by home keeper Sam Burgess knocking the ball around the post for a corner. On 60 minutes a Matt Davies shot was cleared off the line but it went straight to Troy Simpson to make it 4-0. The home side rounded the scoring off on 83 minutes from a Jarrell Kerr free Kick from just outside the box.

Sharpness had a tough home game against second in the table Wick at Hamfields today. Wick's Joe Thomas had the first shot on target from distance after 10 minutes but it was saved by keeper Truan Taylor. On 15 minutes a Loose header back by Nathan Gore was latched onto by Sharpness' Alex Higgs who was fouled by James Pocock. Brad Hewer’s free kick was just just wide. In the 20th minute Wick's Ben Weaver broke clear of the Sharpness defence but was brought down by keeper Truan Taylor just outside the box, for which he received a yellow card. Mike Hardiman bent his free kick just inside the far post to put Wick 1-0 up. In the 22nd minute Ben Weaver got behind the Sharpness back line, but his shot was saved by Taylor but the ball ran loose to Nathan Gore and Taylor once again denied his effort on goal. A second goal on 29 minutes for the visitors came when Shaun Morris laid the ball back to Tommy Longhurst on the edge of the box, his shot took a deflection of Callum Dummelow and Ben Weaver reacted quickest to tuck the ball home. 5 minutes into the second half Mike Hardiman reacted first to a loose ball and played it to Weaver who gave Thomas a chance but he shot wide On 67 minutes Sharks Hewer sent Alex Higgs through but he was brought down by Kyle Curtis who received a yellow for his troubles. Alex Higgs then fired the free kick just wide.

Broadwell Amateurs home form has been top notch this season and they pulled off another good win over today’s opponents Quedgeley Wanderers. Like most games today the two teams had to cope with a very strong wind which made things a little difficult. Wanderers took the lead on 8 minutes when the home defence failed miserably to clear their lines and Jack Hornsby had a free shot on goal which he dully obliged by putting the ball in the back of the Broadwell net. The lead only lasted a minute as Ben Fishwick headed home a Dan Brain corner to the near post. Wanderers were unlucky on 20 minutes when they struck the post. Then on 35 minutes home keeper Jack Watkins steered a shot on target around the post. Broadwell scored a controversial goal on 49 minutes – the ball struck the referee he gave a drop ball to Broadwell Dan Brain collected the ball and hit a powerful shot into the top corner. On 52 minutes Liam Thomas was unlucky when he hit the crossbar for the home side. On 75 minutes Quedgeley were reduced to ten men when a long ball over the top caught out Jordan Rouse and his lunging tackle on Thomas was deemed preventing a goalscoring chance and he received a straight red card. The home side rounded the scoring off in the 88th minute from a ball struck across the Wanderers box and Kian Skidmore finished it off.

A goal after just 23 seconds was enough to give Rockleaze Rangers a much-needed win at home to Hardwicke. The move for the goal caught the visitors on the hop Jay Moore sent the ball into the box and Sam Bailey nipped in to score. The home side should have scored again on 3 minutes but Bailey’s effort struck the crossbar. Hardwicke missed a great chance to level on 21 minutes but Will Matthews effort went over the bar. On 31 minutes Matthews missed a chance again when he headed Jordan Dowdswell’s cross onto the crossbar from 4 yards. The visitors put plenty of pressure on the home side but never really troubled home keeper Dunning. Rangers should have made it 2-0 on 62 minutes Ollie Woolland missing a glorious chance. Sam Bailey was put clear by Miles Hatfield near the final whistle but the Hardwicke keeper pushed the shot around the post.

26th November 2021 - Patchway Town manager taking the rough with the smooth

Simon Parkinson

TIM Minihane says he is prepared to take the rough with the smooth in the bid to put Patchway Town firmly back on the local football map.

The Scott Park outfit approach their home encounter with struggling Hanham Athletic tomorrow respectably placed ninth on the Marcliff Gloucestershire County League ladder and two wins from their last three league appearances in tow to bolster belief levels.

Encouraged manager Minihane accepts, with some frustration, that an enforced summer 2021 rebuilding operation meant his new-look team were always unlikely to hit the heights last season’s form promised, as Patchway set off with four wins and a draw from a five-match unbeaten opening before the Covid crisis called an abrupt halt to their plans.

He explained: “We lost something like eight or nine of our best players over the close season for various reasons, some to higher level clubs which is understandable. Then we were dealt the injury and unavailability card making for the usual challenges trying to get a new group to gel.

“It’s all still a marked improvement on our 2019-20 season when I joined Patchway with us rock bottom with only three points from our first 12 games, although I’ve always said I feel we’d have stayed up under our own steam had the season not ended early due to Covid.

“As a club, the picture is looking a whole lot rosier. When I first came to Patchway, there was hardly anyone in our reserves capable of making the step up to our firsts. That’s all changed quite dramatically.”

The Scott Park supremo explained: “Jurgen Pali, whose older brother Matteo plays with us, has made the move up from our ressies and shown that dogged Italian spirit in central midfield starting our last two games.

“Barry Phillips is another bright prospect who made his first start for us on Saturday as a left-footed centre-back after working hard in the reserves for his opportunity. He showed all the commitment and desire you’d want in a local derby to help us to a 3-2 victory at Henbury, making some crunching tackles and pinging some sweet long passes.

“I’ve also been delighted with Grant Mathieson’s wholehearted and versatile performances on the right side with goals and assists following his summer move to us from Stoke Rangers.

“In between our best performance of the season in thrashing Quedgeley Wanderers 5-1 at home at the end of October, we did gift Gala Wilton all three of their goals on a very windy afternoon to go down 3-0 there, despite creating a lot of chances of our own. We went on then to lose on penalties at a very good Hartpury University outfit in the GFA Trophy before picking ourselves up to beat Henbury.”

Minihane emphasised: “I’m positive about the direction we’re heading in. There are six or seven lads like Jurgen and Barry performing in our reserves capable of regular first team football.

“We also added a third (A) team in the District League for the first time in something like a decade; so that’s helped create a real club buzz and offered another pathway for the young lads there to progress, along with the sprinkling of older Patchway heads extending their careers!

“We might not be at the top end of the County League table at this time, but there is quality now right across the club and it bodes well. Had we kept last season’s promising squad together, I have no doubt we’d now be challenging Shirehampton hard at the right end of the table.

“We were also disappointed late last week to lose our central midfielder Kyle Ford to Hallen, having played under a handful of games for us since joining recently from Almondsbury.

“It’s always a shame when you lose quality like that which can make a difference,” conceded the Town boss, who is urging a potential No.2, with a “determination to help push Patchway forward,” to get in touch to assist him on matchdays.

Anyone interested can contact Minihane on 07523 108239.

Also in the County League tomorrow, Shirehampton aim to reinforce their position at the top with three more points at Bromley Heath United.

Second-placed Wick, adrift by six points with a game in hand, seek to exploit any Shire slip-up when they go to Sharpness.

Rockleaze Rangers strive to return to winning ways at home against Hardwicke (3pm), whilst Henbury and Little Stoke collide at Arnall Drive for a local derby affair.

Aside from the Rockleaze-Hardwicke fixture, all games kick off at 2pm.

20th November 2021 - Shirehampton take points at Frampton United to stay top

Ron Holpin


Shirehampton still lead the table by 6 points a after a 3-1 win at Frampton United. The visitors went ahead after just 6 minutes of the game from a cross into the Frampton box put away by Daniel Morre. The home side in reply almost levelled but Ryan Vincent’s shot struck the underside of the bar and rebounded to safety. Manolo Espada’s shot on target on 26 minutes was steered around the post by keeper Matt Turner. The visitors increase their lead on 56 minutes with a headed goal from Scott Bamford and then James Kenway netted a third on 70 minutes. With just 5 minutes to go the home side pulled a goal back with a Ryan Vincent finish and in the very last-minute Steve Jackson missed a golden opportunity to make it 3-2 from a Dave Merrick cross.

Wick kept up their challenge for the title with a 3-0 win at Bromley Heath United. Fairly even first 15 minutes but the deadlock was broken by Ben Harris to give Wick the lead. The visitors made it 2-0 on 22 minutes with good play down the flanks and Joe Thomas getting the finishing touch. Bromley thought they had pulled a goal back on 30 minutes but Kaylen Edwards shot was cleared off the line. Wick netted a third on 56 minutes when a ball into the box by Ben Weaver was turned in by Ben Harris for his second. On 70 minutes Harris should have completed his hattrick after being put clear on goal he blasted his shot wide. The home side pushed hard but was unable to make any inroads.

Hanham Athletic are still waiting to record their first win of the season after going down 1-0 at home to Hardwicke. They had chances throughout the game but could not get the ball past the visitor’s keeper. The only goal of the game came on 18 minutes from a corner with Rob Hine getting on the score sheet. Just 2 minutes later Paul Coles saw his cracking shot well saved by the Hardwicke keeper and that was followed by several flurries in the Hardwicke box but nothing finished up in the back of the net. Just before the break Jamie Fry tried his luck but he too saw his shot well saved. Following that effort, a cross from George Latham was headed over the bar by Terry Wise. In the second half Hardwicke’s Will Wellon was unlucky when his shot struck the upright. The final effort by the home side came from Jamie Fry but again the visitor’s keeper was there to prevent the ball going in.

Little Stoke pulled of a very good result at Gala Wilton with a 4-0 win. It was the home side that almost took the lead in the very first minute Dan McNally shooting wide after being put clear by Ben Sluman. The home side had another chance on 18 minutes this time Martin Smith headed wide from a Sluman cross. Little Stoke took the lead with a break away following a corner by Gala and Aaron West taking the chance. Jayden Holver then gave the visitors a two-goal cushion on 56 minutes and minutes later he netted again to put the visitors 3-0 up. Stoke made it 4-0 with a late strike from Alex Fox.

Bragging rights go to Broadwell Amateurs after beating close rivals English Bicknor 3-1 in this Forest Of Dean encounter. It could have been much different if Broadwell’s keeper had not kept out a Matt Addis shot on 3 minutes. With both sides trying to find their feet it took until the 26th minute to break the deadlock and it went to the home side from a Dan Brain corner to the near post that was slipped past keeper Edwards by Ethan Wilkins. The visitors pushed hard and were rewarded in the 40th minute when a Jordan Heales penetrating run down the left and cross in for Darryl Addis to slide the ball into the bottom corner. The referee had to hold the game up on 46 minutes following a dubious tackle which caused a flare up between the two teams. After things had settled down Greig Tynan was shown a straight red for punching a Broadwell player. The visitors were now up against it and on 60 minutes conceded a second goal after Dan Brain sent the ball into the box where Ben Fishwick struck it goal wards but it took a deflection into the Bicknor goal. Just 5 minutes later Dan Brain hit a superb shot from distance that flew into the top corner for a 3-1 lead. Bicknor never gave up and pushed hard to get back into the game but without any success.

Henbury were caught napping after Patchway Town were quickest out of the blocks, racing into a 1-0 lead in the 2nd minute of the game with a goal from Grant Mathieson. The rest of the first half was an even affair with opportunities for both sides. In time added at the end of the first half, Will Baldwin levelled the score for Henbury slotting home a free kick from Adam Rosser. Patchway scored twice in 2 minutes midway through the second half to take a 1-3 lead, a Henbury own goal made it 2-1 and the third came from Matt Davies. Henbury hit back with a terrific volley from the edge of the box by Andrew Dickinson to make it 2-3, but Patchway held out to take the 3 points.

Sharpness played out their first draw of the season against Ruardean Hill Rangers on a cold afternoon at Hamfields. Both teams made an energetic start with most of the play taking place in the middle of the park. Ruardean had a couple of long-range chances from Steve Clark and Stuart Cornwall-Boots but both were handled by Taylor in goal comfortably. Sharpness broke the deadlock half an hour in from a free kick. Tom Frankham delivered a curling effort into the box and Alex Higgs was on hand to nod past Underwood.

Ruardean started the second half full of energy and were pressing for the equaliser. However, Sharpness had a great chance on 55 minutes to make it 2-0 when a ball from the left fell to the unmarked Tom Frankham but he failed to put the golden chance away. Alex Higgs had a good chance on the hour mark when put through by Brad Gibbs but failed it hit the target. It was Alex Higgs who looked most likely to score but Underwood was on hand again to stop his effort and Dom Small failed to finish the rebound. The game changed on the hour mark when Tom Frankham felt he was fouled and challenged the referee. He was shown a yellow card and sent to the sin-bin but then carried on his argument and received a red card to put sharpness down to 10 men. Sharpness still had chances with ten and it was that man Alex Higgs who went close after beating three players but couldn’t hit the target. Ruardean got their equaliser soon after when Dan Mason sent Harry Clarke down the left towards the corner flag - he then did well to cut in past two Sharpness players and curled the ball past Taylor into the far corner. The game became very nip and tuck with Sharpness losing both Paterson and Payne late on to injuries which meant they played out the last 5 mins with nine men after running out of subs. Rangers Luke Brown had a golden chance to secure all 3 points with two minutes to go when put through by Fin Jones but Truan Taylor made a great save to deny him.

Rockleaze Rangers v Quedgeley Wanderers a game of two halves the first 45 minutes belonged to Wanderers and the second to Rangers. A very good move down the right in the third minute allowed Kyle James-Bryan to get a shot off from just inside the box that beat Dunning at the near post. Then in the 28th minute Wanderers went two up when Jack Hill’s cross from the right was met by James-Bryan to head back across goal giving Dunning no chance. There were a couple of scares for the home side as Dunning’s handling was not good in the first 45 minutes but Wanderers went into the break with that two-goal lead. The home side looked a different team in the second half and dominated possession and Ben Holbrough in the visitor’s goal did really well to keep out a Sam Bailey shot on 55 minutes. Rangers were back in the game on 65 minutes when Miles Hatfield powered home a header from a Jay Moore cross from the right. The next effort from Jay Moore saw Holbrough diving to push the ball around the post. Rangers continued to have most of the possession but Wanderers held out to take away the 3 points.

19th November 2021 - Rockleaze Rangers boss never doubted team's potential

Simon Parkinson

ROCKLEAZE Rangers’ philosophical manager Peter Bradbury insists he’s never once doubted his team’s potential as a genuine Marcliff Gloucestershire County League competitor over a largely troubled campaign to date.

Billed by many at the start, not least the Hillside Gardens club’s own performers and hierarchy, to be jostling consistently for places at the upper end of the table, Rangers have instead found themselves scrapping for points in the lower reaches of the standings.

Bradbury’s battlers confront tomorrow’s 3G home test against seventh-placed Quedgeley Wanderers (3pm) with seven defeats, two stalemates and only three victories to draw strength from in 12 appearances thus far.

The Rangers boss accepts that type of record had not been in the script when Rockleaze set off in August on a journey they hoped would transport them permanently into the promotion reckoning, a promising unbeaten opening comprising two wins and a draw only serving to raise hopes that such dreams were far from without foundation.

Since then, the slide has been evident and hard to absorb for an otherwise thriving club rich in personnel and potential, one which could well be on the up again at flagship first team level if the tonic of Saturday’s 5-1 away mauling of English Bicknor is anything to go by.

“I’ve really not been that down during the dip,” Bradbury stated matter-of-factly. “Over the past several games our problems have been obvious, and that is we’ve had too many players injured and unavailable. It’s bound to impact anyone.

“There’s been no point getting all grumpy with the lads because they have been doing their best. And they’ve not always had the rub of the green.

“We’re starting to get players back now, and they’re all smart enough to know that the quality has always been here; it’s just not always been able to be out there on that pitch where we want and need it to be.”

Bradbury maintains morale has been raised still more by the return of their “mercurial” front man Dan Webb, who marked his comeback in familiar and potent fashion with two goals at Bicknor following a 16-month assignment with Cribbs in Toolstation and Hellenic League top-flight action.

“Aside from the goals he brings, Dan has such a galvanising effect on everyone, even though morale never really got that low,” an appreciative Bradbury remarked.

“Dan left us for Cribbs during pre-season last year and maybe found he wasn’t getting as much game time this season as he’d have liked.

“It was a shame when he left us because he’d scored 20-plus goals in each of his previous three seasons for us; and goals are something we’d been struggling to achieve in recent weeks due to an injury situation we hope is now finally starting to ease.”

Leaders Shirehampton, meantime, fresh from Saturday’s 6-0 GFA Challenge Trophy thrashing of Ruardean Hill Rangers, appear to be having no such challenges as they travel tomorrow to take on what is likely to still be one of their chief title rivals in fourth-placed Frampton United.

Second-spot Wick strive to turn up the heat on Shire with three more points at Bromley Heath United, while Hanham Athletic again bid to end their winless run since the start at Vicarage Road HQ against Hardwicke, and Little Stoke and Patchway Town hit the road for duels with Gala Wilton and Henbury respectively.

All games, aside from the Rockleaze-Quedgeley encounter which kicks off at 3pm, commence at 2pm.

13th November 2021 - Quedgeley Wanderers gain home success

Ron Holpin


Quedgeley Wanderers dented visitors Hanham Athletic’s chances of following up their first point of the season last week with a 3-0 home success. Hanham created the first chance of the game after 10 minutes but Micky Golding headed over the bar. Sean Lawson set up Jack Hornsby to put Wanderers ahead on 19 minutes with a simple tap in. Home keeper Ben Holbrough then pulled off a brilliant one handed save that was destined for the top corner to deny Hanham levelling the score in the 21st minute. Wanderers increased their lead 2 minutes before the break when Jordan Rouse chested the ball home following a corner. Following the interval Jack Hornsby found himself in a great scoring position with just Hanham keeper Brad Price to beat but the keeper brought of a tremendous save. The visitors gave everything they had a really good chance on 70 minutes but shot wide. Wanderers rounded the scoring off in the 89th minute from a Lewis Cook tap in.

Rockleaze Rangers have halted their slide down the table after a 5-1 win at English Bicknor. The home side have also experienced the same thing and they themselves are sliding down the table. Rangers were fortunate to take the lead when a Bicknor defender directed the ball into his own net. Sam Bailey made it 2-0 with a thunderbolt shot before Blaine Smith pulled a goal back for the home side. Just 2 minutes later Rangers made it three when Dan Webb smashed the ball into the Bicknor net. Then just before the break James Moore crashed home a fourth. Bicknor pushed hard to get back in the game after the break but Rangers held out well and then the home side were caught on the break and Sam Bailey netted his second of the afternoon.

Wick hosted Frampton United in this clash at the top end of the table with both sides going well at the moment. The visitors had the best of the early exchanges and two outstanding saves from home keeper George Hale kept the home side in the game. Frampton kept the pressure on and Hale was in action again on 7 minutes and following that he saved well from Manolo Espada. On 20 minutes the home side created their first real scoring chance a shot that was well saved by the Frampton keeper Billy Thomas. A set-back for the home side on 26 minutes when Ross Woodford was shown a straight red card for a reckless challenge. Frampton took the lead on 43 minutes after George Blythe was put clear to slot the ball past Hale. The lead lasted just 2 minutes and right on half-time Mike Hardiman found Ben Harris who fired his shot into the top corner. Although the home side were down to 10 players, they took the lead on the hour mark when Mike Hardiman headed home a Dan Thomas cross. They almost grabbed a third but Hardiman’s header was cleared off the line.

GFA Challenge Trophy Round One

Broadwell Amateurs gave Fairford Town from the Hellenic League Premier Division a shock holding them to a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes. The visitors had early chances but both Tom College and Jamie Reed missed good chances. The plan from the home side was to close down their opponents as tightly as they could and it paid dividends on 20 minutes when a poor clearance by Fairford keeper Mitchell was picked up by Ethan Wilkins who had a simple task of running the ball into an empty net. Kris Burnard was outstanding in the home defence then on 33 minutes Dan Brain had a great chance to make it 2-0 but his shot was well saved by keeper Mitchell. Fairford levelled the score on 43 minutes when Tom College picked the ball up out wide drifted into the box and past several home defenders before planting the ball into the bottom corner. Dan Brain looked to have a great chance to give his side the lead but heading for goal he was quickly closed down and the chance went begging. Fairford pushed hard but were unable to get past a very resilient home defence and the game went to penalties to decide the winner. Three outstanding penalty saves from the visitor’s keeper Mitchell saw Fairford through to the next round.

Ruardean Hill Rangers faced Shirehampton the leaders of the MGCFL in this first round. The home side were up against it throughout the game when keeper Arron Underwood had to push the ball over the bar after just 4 minutes. Just a couple of minutes later Shire were in front when Jay Spicer headed in at the far post. Then on 10 minutes Scott Bamford latched onto a dreadful back pass to make it two. 5 Minutes later a long shot from Richard Brightwell squeezed under Underwood for the third. A couple of minute later Spicer struck the crossbar. Rangers went down to 10 men on 32nd minute when Steve Coombes was sent off. In the second half Underwood saved well from a Brightwell free kick on 55 minutes and on 65 minutes Steve Clark brought down a long ball from underwood only to see his goalward drive hit the upright. Rangers went down to 9 players on 70 minutes when Josh Sladen was also sent off. 5 minutes later Scott Bamford grabbed his second from the penalty spot and Joe Cox made it 5-0 in the 80thminute after a great build up by Shire. James Kenway finished the scoring off in the 85th minute when he was sent clear from a great through ball.

Gala Wilton had been drawn home to Cribbs from the Hellenic League Premier Division and found themselves up against it right from the off. Cribbs were ahead after 7 minutes when Nanoh coolly slotted home and that went to 2-0 in the 15th minute Feltham scoring after a goalmouth scramble. The home sides first effort in the 25th minute was cleared off the line. A minute later Cribbs hit the crossbar. The home side were unlucky again in the 35th minute when they again had a shot cleared off the line this time by Ryan Crouch. The third on 60 minutes came from the boot of Nanoh and then came a great save from home keeper Lewis Skyers preventing Feltham getting a second. Cribbs rounded it off in the 80th minute when Latham found Steve Murray to fire home number four.

12th November 2021 - Shirehampton warns team they'll have to work hard

Simon Parkinson

LIAM Greening is warning his Shirehampton fliers that life can only become increasingly uncomfortable as they strive to stay firmly on title and promotion track.

The Marcliff Gloucestershire County League leaders take a break from routine tomorrow when they head to the Forest of Dean for an intriguing GFA Challenge Trophy first round encounter with Ruardean Hill Rangers, hosts they comprehensively dismantled 5-1 in a one-sided meeting at the same venue in the league.

Greening expects a robust response from Ruardean Hill to that September drubbing, just as he anticipates ALL his in-form side’s County League compatriots will do their utmost now to upset the applecart as Shire continue their bold bid to bring Toolstation Western League football to the area.

“Teams are taking a good long look at us, and what we’ve produced so far, and it means our lads are having to work extra hard for their rewards,” he observed.

“Saturday was no exception. We were up against a Rockleaze team struggling a bit, yet showing they have a lot more in them than their league position shows. In the end it took two late goals to win it for us in horrible conditions on their 3G pitch, as our strength eventually saw us through.

“It helps to have someone like Scott Bamford coming off the bench after taking a revitalising two-week break and scoring both goals, the second one a fantastic effort.

“The warning signs were there for us again, though, and it comes with the territory – we’ve reached the top through sheer hard work; but to stay there will take an even greater effort.”

Greening recalled: “When we played Ruardean Hill a couple of months ago, we went there with the bare bones personnel-wise and performed very well to win comfortably.

“Since then they’ve had some cracking results and scored a lot of goals. They’ll not be out to do us any favours on Saturday, not least their captain and forward Luke Brown who is one of the best in his position in the league.

“For me, the county cups are important; I want us to win every competition we enter.

“The main thing is we have a facility at Bristol Manor Farm’s ground which allows us to gain promotion should be hold our current position, and that is really good news.”

A cautious Greening emphasised, however: “There’s too much football to be played to get too excited. But when you’re up at the top having conceded only five goals all season – three of them shipped at Hardwicke – and conceded only one goal at home, it tells me that defensively we’ve been pretty solid throughout, despite a very challenging injury situation,” stressed Greening, who has attacker George Loud unavailable to him tomorrow.

While Patchway Town are also in GFA Trophy action, away at Hartpury University, Rockleaze Rangers head for English Bicknor for an important league affair desperate for relief after winning only two of their 11 fixtures so far, despite a series of truly competitive showings and close calls.

Wick’s top-four home clash with Frampton United is a standout contest, and Hanham Athletic pray their morale-sapping ten-game run without a win this term ends in victory at Quedgeley Wanderers.

All fixtures listed above kick off at 2pm.

6th November 2021 - Hanham Athletic gain first point

Ron Holpin


Hanham Athletic have gained their first point of the season with a 2-2 draw at home to English Bicknor. This result could have been so much different for the home side if only they had taken the chances they created in both halves. Hanham started well and missed a couple of early chances with the visitors having to defend well. Then on the 22nd minute the home side went ahead with a very good strike from Paul Coles. The visitors struggled to make any inroads at the other end and Hanham went into the break with that one goal lead. English Bicknor started the better side in the second period and levelled the score on 49 minutes with a very good shot across the keeper by James Davies. The home side rallied and in the 52nd minute retook the lead again it was Coles who hit a low shot into the left corner of the Bicknor net with the keeper looking on in dismay. Hanham should have put this game to bed but again missed chances cost them dearly when the visitor’s broke away and forced a corner on the left and in a scramble in the box Darryl Addis knocked the ball home. There were four further minutes played but neither side managed to find the back of the net again.

Gala Wilton have moved up into second place after a 3-0 success at home to Patchway Town. The home started well and took the lead when the Patchway keeper spilled a shot from Connor Walters and Dan Gayner slotted in the loose ball. A good build up by the visitors almost got them on level terms but Fin Thompson’s shot went narrowly wide. Gala went close to a second on 53 minutes but after the Patchway keeper prevented the ball from going in Dan Gayner then blasted the loose ball over the bar. Gala did however, take a 2-0 lead on 60 minutes with a colly taken goal from Ben Sluman. Unfortunately, the visitor’s keeper got injured and was unable to continue and outfield player Adam Porter took over between the sticks. He was unable to keep out a third goal from Gala on 70 minutes when a through ball from Marcus Foxwell found Wakib Said to slot the ball home. Patchway kept plugging away and were very unlucky in the 85th minute when Callum Thomas cleared Matteo Pali’s shot off the line.

Bromley Heath United came from a goal down to score twice to gain their second win of the season. Little Stoke got off to a flying start and took the lead on 5 minutes from a cross into the box which saw Alex Hill’s diving header hit the back of the Bromley net. The home side hit back and drew level on 12 minutes with a three man move which saw Alvin Nurse slip the ball to Cameron Ford who intern set up Kaylen Edwards to drive the ball into the corner. Little Stoke then missed a sitter to go back in front on 32 minutes. Then 2 minutes before the break Bromley grabbed the lead from a corner sent over by Kaylen Edwards and nodded in by Ollie Amos. Both sides failed to create any chances after the break and the final score remained 2-1 to the home side.

Broadwell Amateurs went down 1-0 at home to Wick who right from the off showed why they are challenging for the title this season. They played good controlled football with a young Broadwell side having to play second fiddle. The home sides Liam Thomas always looked lively and might have given his side the lead but hit his shot over the bar. Wicks first real effort came from Mike Hardiman but he failed to keep his shot down and that to went over the top. The only goal of the game came on 39 minutes when Ben Harris collected the ball on the edge of the box skipped past a couple of defenders before hitting a low shot into the bottom corner of the Broadwell net. Second half was well controlled by Wick with very little coming from the home side. Wick almost got a second on 80 minutes but Mike Hardiman’s shot struck the post.

Frampton United managed a slender 1-0 win against today’s opponents Ruardean Hill Rangers. Although there was only one goal in this game there was plenty of attempts on goal from both sides. Rangers Steve Coombs fired over after just 3 minutes and at the other end keeper Arron Underwood saved well to keep a Manolo Espada shot out of his net. On 26 minutes Steve Jackson had a great chance to give the home side the lead but headed over the bar. On 30 minutes a long ball over the home defence found Steve Clark but he shot straight at the home keeper Thomas. In the second half Underwood saved another Espada shot on 52 minutes and at the other end Luke Brown failed to beat Thomas. Steve Jackson had a great chance on 72 minutes but with just the keeper to beat he failed to get it past Underwood. Rangers Steve Clark then thundered his shot against the Frampton post, then just 3 minutes later the deadlock was broken when Steve Jackson sent Dave Merrick clear to round Underwood and slot the ball home. Frampton had a great chance to increase their lead in the 82nd minute when Steve Jackson was fouled in the box but Underwood brought of a great save to deny Manolo Espada from the penalty spot. Right on time Rangers thought they had levelled when Luke Brown’s shot looked to be going in but somehow Thomas managed to push the ball around the post.

Hardwicke entertained local rivals Quedgeley Wanderers in front of a crowd of 86 at Green Lane. The initial 25 minutes proved to be evenly contested with the majority of the ball seen in midfield. It was the home side who had the first opportunity to score on 26 minutes when Adam Bloomfield pounced into the box and his fierce shot was well parried by Quedgeley’s keeper, Ben Holborough. Quedgeley came to life and five minutes later ex Hardwicke player Sean Lawson shot from 30 yards but it was well saved by Jack Straughn. Hardwicke took the lead on 38 minutes when Will Mathews flicked the ball onto Adam Bloomfield who coolly slotted the ball by the advancing Holborough. Unfortunately, the game was stopped for 10 minutes as Hardwicke’s Right back Sean Clarke suffered a suspected dislocated shoulder after a heavy fall. After the delay Hardwicke almost increase their lead when Jordan Dowdeswell crossed for Rob Hine to head wide. The game brightened up in the second half with both teams seeking to score. Quedgeley equalised on 60 minutes when Ryan Webb’s freekick from 25 yards out cannoned off a Hardwicke defender and deceived the stranded Straughn. Quedgeley could have taken the lead after 75 minutes when Henry Birkett broke down the left wing and crossed to Sean Lawson whose wild shot went well wide with only Straughn to beat. The game opened up with both sides creating clear opportunities and became a thrilling and competitive game. The best opportunity fell to Hardwicke when Bloomfield sprinted down the left wing and crossed to Will Mathews whose header missed the target. Quedgeley’s Birkett then passed a long through ball to Lawson whose low shot was well saved by Straughn. The score draw was a fair result in a highly competitive game which saw Quedgeley’s Lawson and Hardwicke’s Fred Humphries orchestrating their respective midfields.

Sharpness had to come from behind to win this home fixture with Henbury. On 2 minutes Dummelow slipped the ball through to Lacey who ran through but saw his shot saved by keeper Lewis Jefferies. On 13 minutes a scuffle broke out in the left back area in the Sharpness half which results in both James Priday of Sharpness & Jenson Manning’s of Henbury being sent off. 20 minutes in sharpness were awarded a free kick 35 yards out, Alex Higgs struck a tremendous low shot on goal which Jefferies did well to turn round for a corner. A throw in from Henbury’s Tyler Bingham-Wilson into the box fell to Andrew Dickinson whose shot was blocked. Dan Turner sent Will Payne down the right channel and he whipped a cross in but it was stabbed wide by Will Lacey. On 48 minutes Henbury’s Matt Jones set up Brandon Dack to slot into bottom corner. Sharpness levelled on 62 minutes from a corner sent over by Dan Turner to the back post where Tom Frankham controlled it well and hit the ball low and hard it rebounded to Callum Dummelow who stabbed the ball home. The home side grabbed the winner in the 71st minute from a mazy run from Tom Frankham which started outside the box beating four defenders before slotting past Jefferies.

Rockleaze Rangers slide down the table continues after another defeat at home by leaders Shirehampton. It was a fairly even first 45 minutes with the first chance going to Rangers with Aiden Hall’s header being saved by keeper Turner. Shirhampton’s Dan Spicer then struck the crossbar with keeper Dunning well beaten. The game remained at 0-0 late into the second half when Shirehampton brought on Scott Bamford and in the 81st minute he gave them the lead driving his shot past Dunning from 10 yard. He sealed the points for the leaders in the 86th minute with a wonderful shot that flew into the top corner.

5th November 2021 - Cliff Orchard

Ron Holpin

It is with great sadness that we have to announce the passing of Cliff Orchard Managing Director of Marcliff.

Marcliff has been a partner of this league for the last 6 seasons supporting us with sponsorship.

The League’s Management Committee and the Member Clubs send their sincere condolences to his family

5th November 2021 - New Hanham Athletic Boss reflects on positives

Simon Parkinson

HANHAM Athletic’s new manager Tom Morgan has been reflecting on “the positives” after being dealt a first day defeat by Shirehampton’s Marcliff Gloucestershire County League table toppers.

The 35-year-old stepped into the Vicarage Road hot seat, one he desperately wants to cool as quickly as possible, alongside fellow Seymour United club-mate Jason Side in the wake of previous Hanham incumbent Chris Strawford’s departure following a rough start to their campaign.

Saturday’s 4-0 setback at Shire was not unexpected, although it did leave Morgan’s men seeking that highly elusive first point or more back on home soil this Saturday, where league newcomers English Bicknor, from the Forest of Dean, are the guests.

“Shirehampton deserved their win,” Morgan accepted. “But there were a lot of positives to be taken from our perspective and 4-2 would not have flattered us as we had chances too, one a header from four yards out straight at their keeper.

“I said to our lads at half-time and afterwards that if that’s the standard of the County League – Shire were strong, direct and organised just as teams at this level tend to be - we’re really not a million miles away from getting it right.

“One thing I have noticed since coming in is the feel-good factor seems to be very much intact; and that really is a positive to go on with.”

Morgan, who had player-managed Bristol Premier Combination high-fliers Seymour, has made evident strides to reinforce the ranks he has acquired with higher-level know-how. To that end, Tyrone Fudgell, who had been turning out for Bristol Telephones in Toolstation One on a dual registration pass from Seymour, along with fellow central midfielder Tom Welling, back on familiar Vicarage Road soil after injury and a stint with Longwell Green Sports, both featured at the weekend.

They were joined in Saturday’s line-up by versatile forward Sam Brown, a “Hanham lad through and through” who has had his “enthusiasm rekindled,” in the words of the observant Morgan, plus the club’s new No.2 Side, who had captained Seymour having previously performed in the Toolstation League with Oldland Abbotonians.

The new Hanham boss acknowledged: “There was a nucleus of Hanham lads still here when Jason and I arrived; the heartbeat of the team, which was good. With these fresh and experienced faces, things are looking more promising.

“They all showed tremendous work rate and commitment on Saturday, which explains why they were dead on their feet at the final whistle.

“I’m another who has a lot of Toolstation League experience with the likes of Oldland, Bitton, Keynsham and Cribbs. That’s helped me forge good connections with various managers at the level, something I’ll be looking to exploit as I look at the prospect of bringing in loan players to help us out.

“I’m under no illusions we’re in for a tough few months. But we’re only a few points off safety which is why it’s so important we look to grab as many points away from teams in and around us at the lower end of the table when we play them.”

Morgan, who is striving to seal a deal to bring in a new striker ahead of tomorrow’s Bicknor bout, stressed too: “I’m in my mid 30s now and had been playing upfront and managing Seymour before deciding, hard though it was, to move on after getting the call from Bob Sperring (Hanham chairman) asking me about my interest and availability to take over as manager here.

“I’m going to restrict my game time now in order to concentrate fully on getting Hanham, which as a club has tremendous potential now it has a 20-year ground lease agreed with the council, up that table and hopefully into next season flying.”

As for Liam Greening’s Shirehampton fliers, they set out to hold tight to top spot when they head for an encounter with Bristol rivals Rockleaze Rangers on the hosts’ Hillside Gardens 3G.

Fifth-placed Wick, enjoying the afterglow of their GFA Challenge Trophy 5-4 shoot-out success over Bitton at the weekend following a 2-2 draw, are at second-placed Broadwell Amateurs. Keeper Ash Wintle saved Bitton’s final penalty after Todd Carter and Henry Sady had netted in normal time to force spot kicks.

Mid-ranked Little Stoke go to struggling Bromley Heath United; Patchway Town are at third-placed Gala Wilton, and third-bottom Henbury target vital points away against sixth-spot Sharpness.

All games now kick off at 2pm, except for Rockleaze Rangers and Shirehampton who will kick off their home games at 3pm.