Bishop’s Stortford Swifts vs Canning Town – Saturday 15th May, 2pm
Billy Cove’s Bishop’s Stortford Swifts will look to continue their unbeaten run since the restart and win their fourth game on the bounce as they welcome Canning Town to Silver Leys. The host sit fourth after 15-games, and four-points off second with three games to play, while Town sit 13th after 14-games, and 2-points off bottom side Old Southendian.
Despite winning in their opening game, beating Old Southendian 1-nil on the road, the Swifts struggled as they lost four-games on the bounce; losing to Buckhurst Hill, Basildon Town, Shenfield AFC and Sungate before returning to winning ways as they eased past Kelvedon Hatch with a 4-1 victory. A further two losses (against Hutton and Leigh Ramblers) as well as victory over Old Southendian (for the second time), ended the year for Swifts.
Upon the restart, Billy Cove had revitalized his side as they move up the table with a 6-game unbeaten run. Wins against Sungate and Shenfield AFC made it a winning return before the Swifts were held away from home, drawing 2-2 with Springfield. The draw was soon put out of their mind though as they embarked on a three-game winning run; beating Leigh Ramblers, Catholic United and Kelvedon Hatch.
The visitors have struggled to find any form this season, as they hover above the bottom side. The season began with 4-points out of a possible 6 as they drew 2-2 with Catholic United before narrowly beating Leigh Ramblers, winning 1-nil. They couldn’t continue that form and faced three defeats on the bounce as they lost to Harold Wood Athletic and Basildon Town twice before they pulled off a huge win, beating eventual Premier Division Champions Buckhurst Hill.
Again, that was the end of their good run as they embarked on a five-game losing run; facing defeat to Kelvedon Hatch, Harold Wood Athletic, Leigh Ramblers, Old Southendian and Rayleigh Town. Town’s last three games have seen them picked up four points out of a possible nine, with 1 win, 1 draw and 1 loss. Canning Town won 3-1 at home to Hutton before adding a point against the same opponents in the reverse fixture before they were beaten by Buckhurst Hill in their last game.
A win for the Swifts could see them continue their mark-up the table, with the chance to move into 3rd and a point off second, while a win for Canning Town could see them rise to 10th, and extend their lead over Old Southendian to 5-points.
Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Reserves vs Roydon – Saturday 15th May, 4pm
In the later kick-off, Dean Perrett will lead his troops onto the Silver Leys pitch as the Swifts Reserves face a tough test against Roydon, with both sides looking to close the gap on the sides above.
The Reserves didn’t have the best start to the season and picked up a single point in their opening four-games; facing three defeats on the bounce at the start of the season against Runwell Sports Reserves, Epping Town Reserves and Old Barkabbeyans before drawing against Division Five leaders Wakering Sports ‘A’. The form improved towards the end of October as the Swifts Reserves won three on the bounce, beating Shoebury Town Reserves 2-1 before beating Springfield Reserves 3-1 and edging a 10-goal thriller as they beat Herongate Athletic Reserves 6-4. The Reserves fixture immediately after was won by Herongate as they won 4-2 at home before Swifts ended the year with a 5-2 win over Epping Reserves.
Ahead of the restart, their was a change in management as Dean Perrett took over the reigns, looking to finish the season as high as possible. His first game, a home tie against Shoebury Town Reserves, ended in a narrow defeat as Shoebury scored a 90th-minute penalty to win 2-1 before the loss was put out of mind as the Reserves went on a three-game winning run. They scored four against both Old Barkabbeyans and Leigh Ramblers Reserves, with the visitors scoring 2 and 1 goals respectively, before they recorded their 6th-home win of the campaign with a 3-2 win over Newbury Forest Reserves.
The visitors made an even start to the campaign as they won two and lost two of their opening four games. A narrow win over AS Rawreth Reserves and a four-nil thrashing of Old Barkabbeyans kicked off the 2020/21 season before they immediately faced two defeats; losing 2-1 to Springfield Reserves and 4-0 to Newbury Forest Reserves. Towards the end of October, Roydon picked up the best form possible as they went on a 7-game unbeaten run. A 3-0 win over Epping Town Reserves in October and a narrow win over Ramblers Reserves in December saw out a winning end to the year.
Upon their return in April, Roydon continued their good form as they won a further four and drew one. 1-nil wins over Runwell Sports Reserves and Collier Row Reserves were followed by a 3-0 win over Springfield Reserves and a home-walkover against Old Barkabbeyans before Roydon were held on the road to the bottom side Rawreth Reserves, sharing the spoils with a goal each. The lengthy run of form was brought to an end last weekend as Roydon faced a defeat against the divisional-leaders, Wakering Sports ‘A’, scoring one to their four goals.
A win for Perrett’s Reserves could see them rise above their opponents into fourth, having played a game more and closing the gap to second and third to 2-points while a win for Roydon could see them rise to second and go to within 6-points of the leaders with a game in-hand.