A tough week – but now we focus on Street Lambs make a welcome return to Langsford Park
IT has certainly been a tough week at Langsford Park after the Lambs were thrown out of the FA Vase for fielding an ineligible player in last week’s 5-1 second round win at Brixham AFC.
It later emerged that striker Daniel Koita has played in a first qualifying round match for his former club Crediton Town, against Bodmin Town, which ended 3-3 and was won by the Cornish side on penalties.
Unfortunately, he then started for Tavi at Brixham in round two last week, thus breaching rule 15(e) which states that a player cannot represent two clubs in the competition in the same season.
“Naturally we are bitterly disappointed,” manager Stuart Henderson said. “Dan wasn’t aware that he had played in the competition and speaking to the powers that be at the club, the checks that had been done did not indicate that Dan had played in any Cup games.
“It’s just so disappointing and I am gutted for everyone concerned because we felt that, as in previous years, it was a competition that we could have progressed through to the latter stages.”
The Lambs must quickly get that disappointment out of their system as they return to Western League Premier Division action on Saturday – and a welcome return to Langsford Park.
The home clash with Street is our one and only home game this month and Henderson’s table-toppers are looking to extend a ten-match winning streak, which includes that win at Brixham last week.
“I didn’t realise that, but that’s a good record,” Henderson said. “We have always found Street real tough competitors and although we won up there, it was a tight game and they always put in good performances.
“It will be a tough ask, our away form has been better than our home form but it will be nice to play at home again and I hope we can keep our good form going because we are going to need that is we are to sustain any kind of challenge.”
Henderson brought 16-yearold Harry Jeffery to the club prior to the game at Brixham with the intention that he would continue to play in the South West Peninsula League whilst playing midweek games for Tavi and training with them. However, that situation has now changed with Jeffery very much now a part of the squad.
“Harry wants to stay and fight for a place, but we have explained the situation with Harry that his game time will be limited,” Henderson said. “He had the option to go and play in the South Western League, but he’s enjoyed the sessions he’s had with us, the game at Brixham and he enjoys being with the lads and fight for a place, which is every credit to him.
“He certainly has the ability and is only going to develop being so young. We are pleased to have him on board.
“I have no doubt that when we are in the ascendency, Harry will have no issues at all because technically, he is excellent. The challenge for Harry will be when we are against teams where we don’t have so much of the ball and he has to do the other side of the game which is equally as important.
“I have no doubt that in the next year or two, Harry will be a top player at this level, or if we do progress to the Southern League he will establish himself in those leagues as well.”
Meanwhile, the club will face Bridport at home in the Les Phillips Cup after the draw was made this week.
A prelimary round will take place first, which will see Helston Athletic host Millbrook and Ilfracombe Town entertain Buckland Athletic in Group One, before the Lambs enter at the first round stage, where will will face Bridport on a date to be confirmed.
The full draw is as follows:
Preliminary Round Draw
Helston v Milbrook
Ilfracombe Town v Buckland Athletic
Wincanton Town v Cheddar
Street v Sherborne Town
Cadbury Heath v Longwell Green
Bishops Lydeard v Bitton
Devizes Town v Warminster Town
Keynsham Town v Wells City
First Round Draw
Ilfracombe Town/Buckland Athletic v Saltash
Exmouth Town v Wellington
Helston Athletic/Millbrook v Mousehole
Tavistock v Bridport
Shepton Mallet v Bishop Sutton
Welton Rovers v Wincanton Town/Cheddar
Radstock Town v Gillingham
Street/Sherborne Town v Bridgwater United
Brislington v Bishops Lydeard/Bitton
Cadbury Heath/Longwell Green Sports v Odd Down
Ashton & Backwell United v Portishead Town
Oldland Abbotonians v Clevedon Town
Devizes Town/Warminster v Lebeq United
AEK Boco v Almondsbury
Bristol Telephones v Tytherington Rocks
Hengrove Athletic v Keynsham Town/Wells City
The winning teams in Group A will then be combined with the winning clubs from Group B and the winning clubs from Group C to be combined with the winning clubs from Group D.
Clubs within each group to be randomly drawn in pairs, the venue for each match will be that of the first named. The winners will progress and compete in the quarter-finals where all eight round two winners will be drawn at random.