The football season kicked off at the weekend with a full set of fixtures in the Combined Counties Division One and a handful in the Hellenic League Division One East.
The only fixture involving a Berkshire side in the Hellenic Division One East saw AFC Aldermaston travel to East Oxfordshire to face Thame Rangers.
With four sides being promoted this year the two sides are tipped to mount promotion challenges after Thame finished 2nd and Aldermaston 3rd last season. In the first half the Atomics looked strong, hitting the post 3 times, but it was the home side who led at half time thanks to goal on 18 minutes.
Mid-way through the second half the scores were level after Lorenzo Medford scored for Aldermaston, and on 85 minutes substitute Monay Mills-Chandler gave the Berkshire club the lead with a stunning effort. However, there was a further twist, as Rangers scored late on to level the game and claim a share of the points as the match finished 2-2.
Combined Counties League
In the Combined Counties League Division One, Sandhurst Town’s first game of 2019/20 was a reverse of their last game of 2018/19 as they welcomed Tooting Bec to Bottom Meadow. Tooting won the previous encounter 4-1 and finished the season in 3rd place in the table, 3 places above the Fizzers.
Both sides will be aiming for promotion come April so, as you may expect, the game was hard fought and fairly even. With the first half ending goalless it was the visitors who broke the deadlock in the 71st minute when a good cross found the Bec’s striker who tapped in, but the lead didn’t last long as just seven minutes later a Luke Cox free kick found substitute Marvin Hinds who turned the ball in on his debut for Sandhurst. There were no further goals and a competitive match between two strong teams ended 1-1.
Eversley & California started their campaign with a tough assignment of an away match at Walton & Hersham, a side looking to bounce back to the Combined Counties Premier Division at the first time of asking.
The home side looked assured and confident in possession and took the lead after 10 minutes, but as the half wore on the Boars grew into the game and Jemel Johnson had a shot come back off the bar after a good team move.
In the second half Eversley again started slowly but grew in confidence until, against the run of play, Walton grabbed their second goal in the 71st minute. As the game neared full time the Swans were well on top and they completed the scoring with 5 minutes to go after a smart move allowed their captain to smash the ball home from close range and leave the final score at 3-0 to the home side.
Combined Counties League Division One
Sandhurst Town 1-1 Tooting Bec
Walton & Hersham 3-0 Eversley & California
Hellenic League Division One East
Thame Rangers 2-2 AFC Aldermaston