Saturday 10th November 2018
Cirencester Town Development v Brackley Town Saints
Bluefin Sports Supplementary Cup
The Corinium Stadium
Brackley Town Saints turn their attention this week to Supplementary Cup action as they travel to Hellenic League Division One West side Cirencester Town Development on Saturday to play their first round fixture. Brackley still sit top of the Hellenic Premier despite defeat last weekend at Fairford Town, a midweek win at Desborough in the Hillier Cup put the loss behind them and this fixture will see the Saints favourites to grab their second cup win within three days, especially as their hosts have shipped sixteen goals in their last three games. In fact, the goals for and against for the development side make interesting reading for the month of October, as they read F18 A19 and all in just five games!
Ahead of the game Sports Shots caught up with defender Harry Brock to ask if he’d imagined just how good a start to the season his new side would have when he joined this summer:
From day one the management & players believed this was going to be a good year for us, we had a very strong pre-season which did wonders for our confidence and built a strong foundation for the season start. The main factor for this success is our work rate, we have some really special players but all of us appreciate the importance of earning the right to play
How good a squad does Harry believe it is, and are they good enough to maintain their position?
Without being too biased, we have the strongest squad in the Hellenic this year, we’ve played seventeen games so far and we are deservedly top of the table. Anything less than winning the title would be really disappointing now
We asked Harry how he’s settled in and how he thinks the season has been so far:
Settling in to the team was never an issue, they’re a great bunch of lads who made it very easy for me to find my feet, our season so far has been brilliant but there is still plenty of room for improvement. We had a disappointing result at Fairford last week which was difficult to take, they worked hard for their win & deserved the three points but the result was an important learning curve for us, it’s made us aware that travelling away from home in the next couple of months will be difficult, we’re getting to that time in the year where pitches deteriorate & don’t suit our style of play. We are all aware that for us to have any success in the coming months, we must work hard first and then the quality we have will always come through
Which players have impressed so far this season?
I wouldn’t want to single out any individuals, especially with the whole squad performing so well. I will say that our midfield three of James Watts, James Hammond & Lewis Baldwin have been pivotal to our strong start, and I’m yet to come across anyone who has been able to contain them
Who does Harry see as being their biggest competitors at the top of the table:
I believe our main competition for the title this year will be Wantage, we won’t be playing them until the New Year but they have played five or so less games than us in the league and can go top if they win all of those games in hand. It could be difficult for them in the next few weeks though, being so far behind everyone elsewhere in the league could result in them having to play three times a week to catch up. From being in that situation myself a few years ago with Ardley United, playing catch up & cramming games in to an already packed schedule could work in our favour
How are the squad preparing for the game this week at Cirencester?
We are looking forward to the game, they’re a well run club with great facilities but it’s an opportunity to move forward in a cup competition. The gaffer is always very quick to squash any complacency from the lads, we’re expected to win and I do believe we will win, but we cannot take anything for granted. We had a good result at Desborough midweek and we need to build on the momentum for our important clash in Reading next week
Are cup games a happy distraction from league duties?
We’re very happy with our start in the league and hope our form can continue; that being said everyone loves a cup run! Regardless of what competition you are in, getting to a final is great for the club and everyone involved
Finally, we asked Harry is he has any favourite cup memories over his career?
I was lucky enough to be involved in a great squad at Ardley for several years at the start of my career, my best cup moment has to be when we beat Kidlington back in 2014 in the Oxford Senior Cup Final, a four-nil victory against local rivals. I’m also an Oxford United fan to being able to go behind the scenes at The Kassam was extra special.
Thank you for the opportunity to have a chat
Sports Shots would like to thank Harry for his time this week