Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Red Kites aim to put squeeze on hosts

HENLEY TOWN meet the new champions of Division 1 East of the Uhlsport Hellenic League on

HENLEY TOWN meet the new champions of Division 1 East of the Uhlsport Hellenic League on the Invesco Perpetual Triangle tomorrow (Saturday), kick–off 3pm,

writes John Bailey.

Although it may feel like a home match for the Henley players, it is Wokingham’s home fixture under the ground–sharing arrangement.

Though the Satsumas will keep the gate money, the Town would welcome a good crowd, the more so as the Reading versus Arsenal match will be shown on the big screen in the clubhouse almost directly after the Hellenic game, with all supporters welcome.

It is also the last league game of the season for both sides, and, whilst Wokingham have already taken the title, they will surely see the afternoon as providing the occasion to celebrate.

Subject to results in midweek, Henley’s final league position could still depend on the outcome of this game. At the Red Kites’ home match back in August, Wokingham were 4–2 winners. The game came to a premature end after a serious injury to Steven Fairchild in the 88th minute. Sensibly the league allowed the score to stand.

On Thursday, the Town will entertain Binfield in a semi–final of the Reading Senior Cup, kick–off 7.45pm.

Binfield are a well organised and well supported club, who have been successful in recent years. After last weekend’s games they stood fifth of the 20 teams in the Hellenic Premier Division, having already reached one cup final. A little while back, they looked like finishing even higher but have gone slightly off the boil in recent weeks.

They have also had the better of previous meetings with Henley. Since the first clash between the first teams in 1948–49, they have met 35 times, Binfield winning 19 times compared with the Town’s 12, while four games have been drawn. Their most recent meeting came last season in the Hellenic League Challenge Cup, when Henley, at home, went down by the only goal of the game, scored on the hour by Josh Howell.

Hardly surprisingly in view of their recent heavy programme, which included a run of four games in eight days, the Town have been hard hit by injuries to some of their most accomplished players. Mitchell Cooper will miss the rest of the season, the date for a return by Asa Povey remains uncertain and Grant Kemp’s truncated return against Lydney was clearly premature.

Judged on league positions, Binfield will be the strongest side Henley have

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