With four months of the Bracknell & District Sunday League’s 2021/22 now completed, and in the midst of the League’s mid-season break for Christmas, Football in Berkshire takes a look at how the League is shaping up as well as a dip into the form of teams in Cup Competition.
In a Division of only seven teams following the withdrawal of AFC Crowthorne and Berks County, at this stage the Champions should be either Crowthorne Inn or Bracknell Rangers though all teams in the Division have registered wins. Inn, who top the table at the break 9 points clear of Rangers, will surely rank as favourites. Rangers have a game in hand and the teams have yet to play each other twice more.
Bigshot went into the break as leaders 4 points clear of Finchampstead Athletic Reserves and 10 points clear of promoted AFC Dukes in 3rd. Dukes have 3 games in hand and Finch 1. Promoted Freeman Royals have yet to get their League season going but have shown every sign that they can improve on their current bottom placing in the new year.
This one could go all the way to the last day of the season, though Ashridge Park Rangers will be favourites, occupying top and 3 points clear of Braybrooke Athletic in 2nd position. FC Harmanswater (3rd) and Bracknell Spartans Vets (4th) will have a huge say in the outcome of this one.
Another tight one this with promoted and Junior Cup finalists Crowthorne A occupying top spot 4 points clear of 2nd placed Silver Birch A. With 3 games in hand 3rd placed Bracknell Royals, trailing Crowthorne by 7 points, look strong whilst two new teams to the League SF7 (4th) and Bracknell Bisons (5th) have acquitted themselves well.
3M, with a 100% record still intact, are the runaway leaders at this stage, a whopping 11 points clear of 2nd placed BAS (also new to the League), though BAS have a game in hand. A youthful Finchampstead Athletic B occupy third position whilst early front-runners Hope & Anchor are in 4th. Bracknell Titans look for their first league points of the season.
Berks & Bucks FA County Cup
Freeman Royals are the one remaining Bracknell Sunday League team in the Sunday Trophy. Having beaten Thames Valley Railway 7-1 (1st round), Bracknell Saint Germain 7-3 (2nd round) and awarded a walkover win in the 3rd round, Royals will play Loxwood Park Rangers, who beat Woodley United 5-1, in the 4th round (last 16) on Sunday 9th January. Good luck Royals.
Bracknell & District Sunday League Cup
The first two rounds have been played in both the Senior and Junior Cups with quarter final ties scheduled for 30th January.
Two mouth-watering ties await in the Senior Cup as Raglan take on holders Bracknell Rangers whilst William Twigg host Finchampstead Athletic. Two-time winners of the Junior Cup AFC Dukes travel to play Wokingham & Emmbrook TMW whilst Freeman Royals against last seasons finalists Crowthorne Inn completes the draw.
In the Junior Cup last season’s finalists Crowthorne A will look to go one better this time around but face a tough challenge from Bracknell Spartans Vets. Two other intriguing ties pair Bracknell Royals (div 3) with Wokingham Wanderers (div 4), both going well in the league, whilst SF7 take on a struggling Ashridge Park. A resurgent Bracknell Cavaliers (div 2) against newcomers Finchampstead Athletic B (div 4) completes the draw.
The League has two entrants in this season’s competition. Holders Bracknell Rangers open their account with a home tie against AFC Farnham in the new year (9th January) whilst Crowthorne Inn have already progressed to the next round (semi-final) with a 6-0 win over Aldershot Park Elite.
In to 2022..
With changing conditions around Covid and the worst of our weather yet to come, the League hopes to complete its campaign following the previous 2-year’s curtailments.
Everyone concerned has their fingers-crossed for that!
Football in Berkshire wishes all Bracknell Sunday League teams a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.