The low-point this week was the news that after 40+ years involvement in local football, Hampton Magna have resigned from the league with three matches to go. Their remaining fixtures will not be played, and all earlier results will be expunged.
However, on a more upbeat note, the last week has seen three cup finals. Covered earlier, Bishops Itchington earned their second piece of silverware of the season in the Cancer Research Supplementary Cup, while Leamington Hibs narrowly beat Royal Oak in the Sean Horgan Memorial Cup. Royal Oak were also presented with the Division Three Cup. The Andy Campbell Cup Final was a close-fought game between Heathcote Athletic and Leek Wootton that ended 1-1 after 90 minutes, and was finally decided on penalties, with Heathcote eventually lifting the cup.
Since the last update, we’ve had plenty of league action – including a flood of mid-week games as teams try to catch up with all the fixtures lost earlier in the season due to snow and water-logged pitches.
Andy Campbell Cup
Just two games in the top flight. Despite Warwick Cavern taking an early lead through Adam Hughes, Radford Semele came back to beat them 2-1 with goals either side of half-time, courtesy of Matthew Buckham and George Ayley. It was a much more convincing scoreline when Khalsa entertained Bishops Itchington two days after Bishops’ successful cup final. Despite a slow start where Dave Benton put Khalsa ahead, Bishops equalised before half-time through Jason Bradshaw, before turning on the style in the second half with a further four goals from Joe Williams, Matthew Hughes, Josh Turton and Matt Trinder to run out 5-1 winners.
Andy Campbell Cup Winners - Heathcote Athletic
Another high-scoring mid-week fixture saw Khalsa Reserves beat Heathcote Athletic 6-3. Khalsa took an early lead through Ryan Butler, but Heathcote came back into the game to take a 2-1 lead into the half-time break, with goals from Darren Saul and John Aston. The second-half was a different story, as Sam Lambert and Dave Benton grabbed a goal apiece, Tunde Ajibade added a hat-trick, with Nick Keenan getting one back for Heathcote.
Leamington Vets continued their push to secure second spot in the league with a convincing 5-1 victory over Leek Wootton. Ross Jackson added to his impressive tally with a hat-trick, with Steve Howkins and Anthony Carter grabbing one each, Andy Legg managed the consolation goal for Leek Wootton on the hour mark.
Mid-Warwickshire Police kept up the pressure on Vets by beating Real Barston 3-1 on Sunday, with Jim Quinlan, Peter Freedman and an own goal doing the damage. Chris Jolly got a last-minute consolation for Barston. Two days later, the Police travelled to Dynamo Leamington hoping to get themselves within touching distance of the top two. Dynamo took an early 2-0 lead, with Ash Rowley and Ryan Woodward getting the first-half goals. Three goals in the last fifteen minutes kept it interesting, with Pete Freedman getting one back for the Police, Ash Rowley adding his second and Dynamo’s third, before Lee Owen pulled another one back for the in the last couple of minutes to make for a tense finish. With Dynamo eventually getting all three points, the Police’s chances of finishing in the automatic promotion spots looks to be over.
With the Division Two title already secured by AFC Warwick, the final mid-week game of this week saw them crash to an 8-1 defeat against Radford Albion. Josh Beasley scored AFC’s only goal, while Radford shared their goals between Paul Ward, Jamie Lee (2), Brodie Cullinan, Sion Humphreys, Paul Murray and Kurtis Wilde (2).
Division 3 Table
Foresters Arms faced Chadwick End mid-week in a game that closed off the campaign for both teams. Roberto Ciuffini opened the scoring with an early goal for Foresters, before Tim Harris equalised for Chadwick. Jack Mancini grabbed a second for Foresters shortly before half-time, and with a goalless second-half, this proved to be the deciding goal, with Foresters winning 2-1.
Liberal Club inflicted the final damage on Hampton Magna with a 10-1 defeat, but sadly for Liberals, this result will be expunged following the resignation of Magna from the league.
Royal Oak pulled further away from the trailing pack with a comprehensive 6-0 win over HRI Wellesbourne Reserves, with goals from Kyle Gibson, Michael Glover, Wesley Klopper, Mark Brazier, Matthew Evans and Josh Goodwin. The resignation of Hampton Magna confirms that Royal Oak, in their first season in the league, have won Division Three with a very impressive points total of 37 out of a possible 42.
With the most teams of any division, the games came thick and fast in Division Four, with several teams playing multiple games.
Stockton played three games in this period, losing 2-0 to Long Itchington (Steven Edden & Sam Crawford), beating Whitnash United 3-0 (John Ahearne, Calvin Farrar & Daniel Brown), and then facing Lillington Juniors Reserves two days later. Despite Stockton opening the scoring through Sam Gilbert, Juniors had too much for them - David Jones was in fine form scoring five as he enjoyed a run-out for the Reserves, with Borislov Koev and Tariq El Hage getting one each. Stockton had a late flurry in the last ten minutes, with Richie Davies grabbing two and an own goal bringing the scoreline to 7-4.
Juniors themselves had a busy week, as three days earlier, they fought out a 2-2 draw with Whitnash United. Abhishek Paul opened the scoring for Whitnash, Borislov Koev and Mark Hickey got one each for Juniors either side of half-time, before Alan Robinson grabbed a last-gasp equaliser for Whitnash.
A heavy defeat by Warwick Printing meant Warwick Boar remain firmly in the bottom two of the division. With Harvey White getting four, Corey Turner a brace, and Kyle Hutchings, Nicholas Ford and Jake McCarthy-Phillips all adding a goal apiece, Printing ran out 9-0 winners. Boar suffered a second defeat of the week at the hands of Castle Rangers, with Rangers racing into a 3-0 lead in the first ten minutes with two goals from Daniel Hargreaves and one from Paul Saunders. Casey Watkins managed a consolation for Boar in the second-half, but it still meant a 3-1 victory for Rangers in their only game of the week.
Kineton narrowly defeated Princethorpe 3-2 to maintain their push for the title, with Mitchell Keyes, Connell Farrell and Liam Naven-Jones scoring for Kineton, and Charlie Bush getting a brace in response for Princethorpe. Kineton were also involved in two other high-scoring games this week. A 5-2 victory over Warwick Printing featured Elliot Durbin, James Keller (2), Harry Ford and Liam Naven-Jones notching for Kineton, with Kyle Hutchings and Hayden Barnett replied for Printing, and this was followed by a 7-2 defeat at the hands of Stockton United. Dan Cornes (2), Kody Neal (2), Mitchell Coleman, Ryan Ward and Ben Harrison were on target for United, while James Keller and Ethan Stevens got one each for Kineton.
With a couple of games to go, this mixed week for Kineton nevertheless helped their push for the division title - with less than a fortnight to go, they sit one point clear at the top of the table with a game in hand.
Meanwhile Princethorpe closed out their campaign with a thrilling 7-5 victory over Barley Mow. Sam Rose (3), Jack Fraser (2), Zach Holyoake and Paul Sidaway all scored for Princethorpe, while Barley Mow responded with a Ben Allen hat-trick and a brace from Chris Young. Princethorpe finish their season with a respectable 41 points, and, despite this setback, Mow are still in with a shout of winning the title in their first season.
Also with three games played this week, Long Itchington are still in with a good shout of securing one of the top spots, despite mixed fortunes over the last ten days. They got off to a good start with a 2-0 win over Stockton (already mentioned above), before losing 4-1 to Stockton United on Sunday - Elliott Parasmo scoring Itchington’s only goal, and Ryan Ward (2), Dan Cornes and Mitchell Coleman getting the goals for United. Itchington got back to winning ways later this week, when they narrowly beat Warwick Printing by two goals to one. Oladeji Sorinola and Todd Howarth got the Long Itchington goals, and Harvey White scored Printing’s only goal of the game.