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Thursday, 18 December 2014
Hopefully people are starting to hear of us, says Bridon Ropes manager Ben Kotey PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 01 February 2012
BLY SPARTANS manager Matt Hume says he is not looking any further than their trip to Lewisham Borough on Saturday.

The Strood based outfit are now just one point clear of Bridon Ropes at the top of the Kent Invicta League table after they were held to a goal-less draw by Phoenix Sports last weekend.

Looking forward to their trip to the Ladywell Arena to face fifth-placed Lewisham Borough, Hume said: “Our long-term ambition goes as far as Saturday.  I don’t want to look too far in the future at the moment.

“We’ve got to get our lads together as we didn’t play well second half (against Phoenix), work hard in training and go into Saturday’s game and make sure we get three points.

“Particularly at this stage of the season, don’t look too far ahead.  We all know what we want to achieve, we want to win the league and go up this year.  The way we achieve that is by focusing on our training and Saturday’s game.”

Hume added: “I’m sure Lewisham will be good as you find, when you’re top of the league, that sides want to raise their game against you.  I’m expecting it to be really tough.

“Phoenix have come here after a couple of poor performances, but they’ve come to us and I thought they were a decent side.

“We’ll have to contend with that until the end of the season.”

BRIDON ROPES moved to within a point of Bly Spartans after the Charlton based outfit defeated Hollands & Blair courtesy of Jason Elliott’s first goal of the season last weekend.

The central defender met Luke Doherty’s curling free-kick with a glancing near post header, which sailed over James Smith to find the top far corner in the 65th minute of an uninspiring game.

It was a pleasing week for manager Ben Kotey, as his side produced the club’s most famous result, going down to Homelands seven days’ earlier to clinch a 3-2 win over Ashford United.

Kotey said: “They had some experienced players still playing for them so to go down there and perform the way we did and to get the result was very pleasing and to come on the back of that and come up here and then play Hollands & Blair and get a result against Hollands & Blair as well, it’s been two pleasing results.”

Bridon Ropes are without a game on Saturday, but they welcome Lewisham Borough to the Meridian Sports & Social Club on 11 February.

“That’s going to be an interesting game,” said Kotey.  “Lewisham are our local rivals and every time we play against each other it’s always a very good footballing match so if you’re not doing anything it might be a good idea to watch that one!

“I think it will be a better spectacle (than the Hollands & Blair game), but Lewisham try to play, they’re a good footballing side and when we can we try to play as well.”

Kotey admits his side are battling it out with some more established clubs for the inaugural Kent Invicta League title.

“Last season was our first full season in the Kent County Premier and I think we finished fourth there and we did really well,” he recalled.

“I was really pleased with us to finish in the top four but Hollands & Blair won it, Canterbury went up (to the Kent League) and so did Cray Valley, so to finish a bit below those three sides who have had more history in the last recent years’ at this level was pleasing.

“We got invited into the Kent Invicta League.  Once I was told I said to the club we’ve got to take this opportunity.  I believe in the boys tremendously. I’ve been working with most of these lads for the last three seasons so I know what qualities we have got.

“In terms of a name Bridon Ropes are not a well-known name, in terms of Hollands & Blair, Cray Valley, Canterbury City and club’s like that but hopefully people are hearing of us and hopefully in the next few years’ they’ll be more progression.”

However, when suggested that their modest venue – which only has recently installed a pitch perimeter around three sides of the pitch and hard standing around two sides – will not be up to Kent League standards, Kotey replied, “Well, if we win the league that will be a tremendous achievement.  The other things we have is a fantastic committee and you never know, you never know!

“Things can happen.  Strange things have happened so I’m positive and I’m hopeful.  If that does happen then obviously something can happen out of that.”

HOLLANDS & BLAIR boss Paul Piggott, meanwhile, admitted his side were making it harder for themselves to claw back their ten-point deficit from their Medway rivals Bly Spartans.

Gillingham based Blair remain in third place after last Saturday’s defeat and Piggott wants his side to bounce back with a won over tenth-placed Bearsted at Star Meadow.

“Of course we do,” he said.  “They beat us earlier on in the season, probably our worst performance of the season at their place so we’ll be looking to pick ourselves up.  We’re playing at home and we need to get a win and bounce back quickly.”

Piggott added: “I want us to win the league.  Yes, we’ve made it even harder for ourselves again but I want us to win the league, simple as that!

“If we can get in a few Cup finals along the way then great, that helps the club along but we still want to be winning the league.”

Then, on 11 February, Hollands & Blair travel to Bly Spartans for a place in the final of the Kent Invicta League Challenge Trophy.  The winners of which will lock horns with Phoenix Sports.

Piggott said: “They’re all big games to us now, when you’re up the top and you’re still involved in two cups at this stage of the season and you’re sitting third.

“We want to beat Bly as much as they want to beat us.  It’s a semi-final and no-one ever wants to lose a semi-final so we’ll be going to play Bearsted, hopefully we’ll put a good performance in there and we’ll take that into the games.”

Looking even further ahead, Blair welcome Kent Hurlimann Football League outfit Erith & Belvedere to Star Meadow on 3 March for a place in the Umbro Kent Senior Trophy Final up for grabs.

“Listen, they play in the league above and they’ll want to come to beat us,” said Piggott.

“We’ll be prepared and our boys will be up for it and hopefully we’ll see one or two players back, get some consistency going in our squad again.  We’ll be ready to play them anyway!”

PHOENIX SPORTS manager Scott Saunders has revealed the necessary ground improvements that are being made to their Barnehurst ground.

“We want to go up.  All the plans are in place, floodlights, stands, pathways, that sort of stuff is in place,” said Saunders.

“We’ve got a very good chairman and vice-chairman behind us, so the ambition is definitely to go up, if we can.”

Phoenix Sports won the first ever Kent Invicta League game, beating local rivals Erith & Dartford Town 4-0 in front of 300 people at VCD Athletic’s Oakwood back in August, with Dominic Websdale going down in history as the League’s first ever goalscorer.

Phoenix, in fourth place and ten points behind Bly Spartans, welcome Ashford United on Saturday and Saunders said: “I would have taken four points from our next two games (Bly and home to Ashford United).  We need to win as we’re a few points behind Bly, with games in hand.

“You know Bly are the team to beat at the moment, the team to catch.”
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 01 February 2012 )
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