Crown Fire Central & South Norfolk League 2010/11 season preview
The League programme gets underway next Saturday with the first round of the Birds Sport & Outdoor Benevolent Cup, the League's equivalent of the Cup Winners Cup.
The League programme gets underway next Saturday with the first round of the Birds Sport & Outdoor Benevolent Cup, the League's equivalent of the Cup Winners Cup. The draw has produced some interesting matches with the pick of the action likely to be the all First Division tie between the Division One runners up Bridgham Utd and Dereham Town A who finished just a point behind Bridgham in third place.
There is another all First Division tie between the Junior League Cup winners, Cockers, and the Division Two runners up Tacolneston. Elsewhere, Division Two champions Thetford Rovers Res will entertain the Pease League Cup winners Hethersett Athletic while the Primary League Cup winners Morley Village will entertain the Ben Smith Memorial Cup winners up Northwold Sports and Social Club.
With a record number of 13 new teams joining the League this season, competition is likely to be fierce in all four divisions. Division One has an established look about it with only Dickleburgh having left and Yaxham having been relegated to Division Two. Based on last season, Bridgham Utd, Dereham Town A, Swaffham Town A and Gressenhall should all be there or thereabouts.
Of the others, Cockers and Hingham Athletic will be looking to improve on their creditable mid-table performances from last year. Cranworth, Shipdham, Narborough and Rockland Utd will all be hoping for better things this season.
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Of the promoted teams Thetford Rovers Res will have to be considered real contenders given their magnificent record of the past three seasons and both Tacolneston and Bunwell are more than capable of getting good results and may well make a noticeable impact in the top division.
Division Two will produce the usual tight competition and last season's fourth-placed team Morley Village, who missed out on promotion by one point, have to be one of the favourites. Several of the mid-table teams are capable of having a good season and this group is likely to include West End, Wymondham Town A, Necton, Nostro and Shropham Utd.
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Of the promoted teams Hethersett Athletic, Castle Acre Swifts and Northwold S&SC all ought to do well given their records from last season and Sporle ought to be able to make a serious impact. The dark horse will be Feltwell Utd who re-join the league after a gap of a few years and go straight into Division Two because of the likely strength of their team and because of their previous position. It will be interesting to see how they fare with this new challenge.
The competition in Division Three is likely to be just as tight with six teams from Division Four having been promoted and two other new clubs joining the fray. Of last season's teams Bawdeswell, Gressenhall Res, Great Cressingham and Wendling all ought to be able to make an impact.
The Division Four champions Splitz Utd and runners up Thurton and Ashby will both be looking to continue their good form from last year and the other promoted teams Stoke Ferry, Breckland Wanderers, Methwold Rovers and Narborough Res, all ought to be capable of mounting a serious challenge for honours.
The two newcomers Marham Wanderers, who join the league from the North West Norfolk League, and North Elmham are the unknowns but, based on their applications, could be real contenders for divisional honours. Rockland Utd Res make up the trio of new teams after a gap of a year and will be hoping to improve on their position from the 2008/09 season.
Division Four is often dominated by the newly-elected clubs and this year may prove to be no exception with so many of the new teams joining the league making their debut in this division.
Of the new teams, the two A teams from Diss Town and Mattishall ought to make an impression. Of the new reserve teams Mulbarton Wanderers, Nostro and Tacolneston are all based on well established clubs and could do well, as could North Elmham Res.
The other three new teams are Dereham Cockers Utd, Tugas Utd and Weasenham Wanderers who will all be enjoying their first taste of Saturday football. Of last year's Division Four teams Shropham Utd Res, Rampant Horse and Colkirk all ought to be in with a shout and both Scarning Utd and Beetley Utd will be hoping for better seasons this time around.