Football again comes to Ascot. The visitors were Hayes and Yeading who play two steps higher than the of the occupants of the racecourse ground, in the Evo-Stik Southern Premier League.
Hayes & Yeading brought a team of young players to the game due to the fact that most first team representatives were on duty the evening before in the first game at their home ground after a lengthy redevelopment. But it was still a squad of talented individuals that came to Berkshire to give Jeff Lamb’s side their last run out before a busy week of Hellenic League and FA Cup action.
As usual no team sheets or squad news from the dressing rooms to help a generous helping of supporters on a sunny afternoon to spot who was who but the Yellamen did have new goalkeeper Carl Dennison in goal. But a good healthy and enthusiastic game followed.
The first half saw both teams attack and defend equally, a penalty to the home side the only real nail biter towards the end of the half saw the visitors goalkeeper save deep to his right.
Both sets of managers were enthusiastically giving instructions to their sides, in order to give them some ideas of what they can expect in the weeks to come.
The second half again saw the same attack and defend game, the visitors this time getting a spot kick for an infringement in the eighteen yard box with the penalty being converted. Soon after Ascot had a clear advantage with a one on one with the keeper the crossbar preventing the equaliser.
End to end, the game continued, an attack from Hayes deep to the right of the Ascot goal claimed another for the visitors from Middlesex.
Both sets of players at full time looked weary from the mid-summer heat as the clock hit the 90 minute mark.
No one from Ascot United was available for comment after the game, but it must be said the team gave an enthusiastic performance giving Jeff Lamb and Paul McGrotty something to think about before their opening Hellenic fixture at the racecourse ground on Tuesday evening against Highmoor-IBIS.
Then it’s another home evening match on the Friday in a FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round against the relegated Premier Division side Milton United.
Both games offer the players and officials at the Racecourse Ground the opportunity to show how supporters and the wider non league community how committed the Yellamen are for the season ahead.
It has been widely known that the management at Ascot have had one of their hardest pre season for a long time, both looked determined and focussed on the task ahead and only time will tell what is to become of the team that has consistently been at the top of the non league action in the area.
The officials at the Racecourse Ground are certainly looking forward to their tasks this season and all I can say is pop along, see them and make your minds up for yourselves. The football season in the area is certainly in full swing!
Main image: Carl Dennison dives for a penalty by Mark Pugh.