The opening weekend of the season certainly got off to a good high-scoring start!
Since the biggest scoreline of the day was in Division Three, we’ll start the round-up there…
Bishops Tachbrook (briefly Jet United) managed to hit TEN past VTS Warwick (formerly Foresters Arms), with Karl McGuire and Alister Wrist getting opening day hat-tricks. Callum Yeomans, Rhys Pugh, Dean Pugh and Lewis Christian all added one each.
Hampton Magna celebrated returning to action after nearly folding at the end of last season with an opening day 2-1 victory over Castle Rangers. Jack Rees and Travis Lea got the goals for Magna, with Dan Hargreaves converting a penalty for Rangers.
Celebrating their 40th season in the League, Liberal Club also got off to a good start, with a convincing 4-0 win over new boys Harbury. Mark Smith grabbed an early opener, Sam Ashford scored twice in quick succession in the second half, and Matt Bemrose sealed the win just before the end.
The two promoted teams met each other in the opening game, and Warwick Printing came out on top against Princethorpe. Josh Cooke scored for Princethorpe, while Matt Darby scored a brace and Kyle King added the third, to give Printing a 3-1 victory over Princethorpe.
Liberal Club Team Photo
On the theme of big scores, Division Four is next, as twenty-one goals were scored in just three games! New boys Leamington Hibs Reserves led the way with a convincing 9-0 victory over Joiners Arms. Liam Bullimore was the third player of the day to get a hat-trick, with Matt Nutt, Joshua Johal, Charlie Fitzmaurice, Harry McKay, Mitchell Williams and Ricci Goldswain all chipping in.
Another new team also started impressively. Chadwick End Reserves managed an 8-1 victory over Warwick Boar, with Dan Hardwick topping the league goalscorer charts after scoring four, Steven Ebdon grabbed a brace and Cameron Parker & Thomas Wale each added one. Tommy Williams converted a penalty for Boar in reply.
The final game in Division 4 saw Stockton United see off new boys Blackdown with a 3-0 scoreline, with Dan Cornes, Kody Neal and Mitch Coleman getting the goals.
Although the scorelines in Division Two weren’t quite so impressive, there were some intriguing games. Long Itchington and Kineton were both promoted from Division Four, and continued their rivalry in the opening game. Long Itch got the three points with a 4-2 victory, with goals from Pepe Fernandez (2), Elliott Parasmo and Conor Bennett, while Mark Ling and Liam Naven-Jones (penalty) scored for Kineton.
Heathcote Athletic managed a 2-1 victory over Khalsa Reserves with a brace from Nick Keenan, while Mundeep Dhaliwal getting Khalsa’s goal.
Ettington Rovers and HRI Wellesbourne fought out a tight game, finally settled by an own goal which gave HRI all three points.
Finally, despite Dan Blohm opening the scoring for Dynamo Leamington in their game against Real Barston, Matt Gillett and James McDowell scored either side of half-time to give Real a 2-1 victory.
There were a couple of surprises in Division One, as newly-promoted AFC Warwick had too much for Leamington Hibs. Hibs struck first through Adam Johnson on the half-hour, but AFC scored three second-half goals (Alex Sharp, Ricky Barby and Salv Mannina) to give AFC a 3-1 win.
Westlea Wanderers and Khalsa went toe-to-toe in a thrilling 3-3 draw. Josh Mann got the first goal of the game for Khalsa, with Kurt Parsons quickly replying for Westlea. The second-half saw a flurry of goals, as Tunde Ajibade gave Khalsa the lead shortly after half-time, only for Lewis Scott and Jake Byrne to put Westlea 3-2 ahead. Khalsa left it late, and with ten minutes to go, Ricky Uppal grabbed an equaliser.
Finally, Bishops Itchington narrowly overcame Radford Semele. Johnny Adair opened the scoring for Bishops, and James Clarke equalised shortly afterwards, only for Jase Bradshaw to convert a penalty a few minutes later and Tom O’Callaghan to add a third just before half-time to give Bishops a 3-1 lead going into half-time. George Ayley got one back with ten minutes to go, but Bishops held on for a 3-2 victory.