Bedfordshire League preview: January 17

Caldecote Reserves v Stevington PNL-150114-105041002
Caldecote Reserves v Stevington PNL-150114-105041002
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Tthe spotlight game at the head of the league takes place at the Flitwick Community Football Centrewhere fourth place Flitwick Town having tasted defeat just once play host to Shefford Town & Campton.

The visiting league leaders after a run of six consecutive away wins have now in their last two outings lost at Eastcotts AFC plus been held to a draw at Sandy and will travel with the knowledge that a victory is a must if their title hopes are not to fade before the first cuckoo of the year is heard.

Favourites for the Premier Division supported by Sportsform title, Renhold United, sit the afternoon out.

Over at Church Lane, third place AFC Oakley M&DH still unbeaten on home soil this season go into local derby action against seventh place Sharnbrook whose away record suggests nothing will change on that score come the final whistle.

Whilst for fifth place Marston Shelton Rovers, who have been beaten just the once on the road this season, it’s a trip to Bedford Road Recreation Ground to take on ninth place Sandy.

Despite the hosts still being on the outlook for their first home win of the season they nevertheless will be no pushovers having drawn five of their home seven encounters to date and just suffered narrow defeats at the hands of Renhold United and Eastcotts AFC in addition to entering the game now unbeaten in their last five starts.

For eighth place Eastcotts AFC, who since winning that game at Sandy back in mid-October have now lost their last four away outings, it’s a trip to Jubilee Playing Fields to take on 12th place Wilstead whose home record shows them having won just the twice this season against the division’s current bottom two clubs.

Meantime over at Hurst Grove it’s local derby action between second from bottom of the table Lidlington United Sports and the visiting Wootton Blue Cross where the hosts will be looking for just their second home win of the season against a Blue Cross side who are now unbeaten in their last five outings and last lost on the road at AFC Oakley M&DH way back in the opening month of the season.

Other action comes at Harvey Close, the venue at which third from bottom of the table Caldecote following two consecutive home defeats look to return to winning ways on home soil against the visiting tenth place AFC Kempston Town & Bedford College. However, the task will be no easy one as the Town in their seven trips away from Hillgrounds this season have dropped just five points in losing at Renhold United and having to settle for a share of the spoils at Sharnbrook.

The final game is just down the road on the Green where bottom of the table hosts Ickwell & Old Warden search out just their second home win of the season against the visiting 11th Pavenham whose away record to date shows up just defeats at Renhold United and Shefford Town & Campton.

Division One supported by Wests Citroen Bedford action will see league leaders Elstow Abbey at the Warren looking to take their unbeaten ways up to eight games against the visiting third from bottom of the table Shefford Town & Campton Reserves who will hit the road looking to avoid their seventh consecutive defeat.

Whilst for second place Henlow it’s a tough looking trip on the road when after failing to win on both of their last two trips away from Groveside they make tracks for an Allen Park outing against eleventh place Queens Park Crescents who are now unbeaten in their last three home starts.

Of the others still in the championship/promotion mix both Great Barford and Cranfield United face trips on the road.

Third place United now winners of their last six games head for an Ickleford Recreation Ground outing against second from bottom of the table Marabese Ceramics who are still in search of their first home win of the season. Whilst fourth place Great Barford will be looking to take their unbeaten ways up to 10 games in Cople Playing Fields action against the hosting twelfth place Bedford SA.

Other action comes at King George VI Playing Fields where tenth place AFC Oakley M&DH Reserves will be in search of just their second home win of the season against the visiting bottom of the table AFC Harlington and at Gold Street, sixth place Riseley Sports who are now unbeaten in their last five outings receive a visit from eighth place Potton Town.

The final game in this section is at Stockwood Park Athletic track where ninth place hosts Sundon Park Rangers look to end a run of four straight defeats when called up by seventh place AFC Kempston Town & Bedford College Reserves who in having started the season with four straight away wins have now only won just the once at AFC Harlington in their next six trips away from their Hillgrounds base.

The spotlight for the lower division sides this weekend falls upon the ties in the Quarter-final of this season’s Bedfordshire FA Junior Cup. Of the eight sides left in the competition seven belong to the Bedfordshire County Football League, the sole exception being Luton Distict & South Beds League Caddington Rangers Reserves who will be playing hosts at their Manor Road base to division two high flyers Westoning.

The pick of the other three ties perhaps comes at Stevington Playing Fields which sees a clash between division two high flying hosts Stevington and their equally high flying visitors FC Houghton. Yet if we are to see a shock result this could well come at Crawley Road, the venue at which division three hosts Cranfield United Reserves receive a visit from division two outfit Moggerhanger United.

The final tie coming at the Hockey Centre, the venue at which hosts Bedford United will be looking to take revenge for their league defeat at the hands of their visitors Kempston Athletic back in early November.

With these cup ties taking place the division two league action is reduced to just a programme of four games. Over at Renhold Playing Fields, third from bottom of the table Renhold United Reserves now on a four game losing run receive a visit from fifth place Elstow Abbey Reserves who will travel looking for their third win on the bounce.Whilst tenth place Meltis Albion Reserves now without an away win since winning at Wootton Village back in mid-October make tracks for a Cutler Hammer outing against the hosting seventh place Kempston Hammers Sports.

Other action comes at Marston Playing Fields, the venue at which 11th place Marston Shelton Rovers Reserves now on a three game winning run are called upon by sixth place Wootton Village who will be looking to take their unbeaten away ways up to four games

At Harvey Close, second from bottom of the table Caldecote Reserves losers of their last six outings play hosts to bottom of the table Wilstead Reserves who are still in search of their first away point/points and win of the season.

Likewise the league action in division three is reduced to a programme of just five games and perhaps the pick of these comes at Pirton Playing Fields, the venue at which second place Lea Sports PSG receive a visit from the still 100%/unbeaten on the road and eighth place White Eagles.

Elsewhere at Whiston Crescent sixth place hosts Clifton having lost their last two games are called upon by bottom of the table Mid Beds Tigers who are currently on a nine game losing run and at the Bedford Academy, ninth place FC Serbia now unbeaten in their last three home outings are visited by seventh place Ickwell & Old Warden Reserves who are likewise now unbeaten in their last three away outings away from the Green.

Other action comes at Rectory Road, the venue at which tenth place Shefford Town & Campton A receive a visit from third place Flitwick Town Reserves who will look to extend their unbeaten ways up to seven games and at Greenfield Road, third from bottom of the table Westoning U20 without a home win to their name since the opening day of the season face a visit from fifth place Atletico Europa who have now lost their last three outings.