Another Wet Season
Some of the worst weather since the turn of the century meant that at the end of February over 400 matches still had to be played. Despite this set-back each of our competitions reached their conclusion. and one thing that the enormous backlog of fixtures did create was a dramatic and interesting finish to the season.
Whilst Wadham Lodge won senior division three by eight points only one points separated the next three teams with Upminster taking the runners up position.
Senior division two went down to the last match when Romford Reserves defeated Runwell Hospital 2 – 1 to take the division on goal difference by one goal. Unfortunately Romford are leaving us as they have been unable to secure acceptable facilities for next season.
Senior division one also provided a nail biting finish and whilst both clubs were promoted it was not until the last day of the season when in front of over 200 spectators M & B club beat Buckhurst Hill to take the title by three points.
Harold Wood Athletic retained the Premier Division title when they won their penultimate match against Frenford Senior 2 – 1 to overtake runners-ip Kelvedon Hatch.
Reserve division three was also a tight affair with new team Lakeside taking the division by just two points from Springfield.
Whilst Westhamians won reserve two by ten clear points it took a last match win to secure Buckhurst Hill runners-up position.
Kelvedon Hatch won the reserve division one title for the first time since 1997.
Harold Wood Athletic had to win their last match by four clear goals to overtake Frenford Senior for the runners up position and a 5 – 1 victory gave them the one goal goal difference they required.
There were double celebrations at Westhamians after they beat Hannakins Farm 2 – 1 in the senior cup final and Frenford Senior by the same score in the reserve cup final.
Third division Wadham Lodge showed their strength in the Denny King Memorial Cup final when they won 2 – 1 against premier division Epping.
In the county cups Galleywood made it through to the final of the Essex Premier Cup after playing the three rounds prior to the final on consecutive Saturdays but lost out to West Bergholt. Frenford Senior made it through to the semi-final of the Essex Junior Cup where they lost to the eventual winners Old Southendians.
Canning Town broke new ground when they became the first team from our league to gain entry into the F.A. vase. They never reached Wembley but i hope they enjoyed the experience of the competition.
No-one can say that Harold Wood Athletic had an easy job retaining their title. At the start of April they had played only ten of their twenty six league games but in an extraordinary last two months they lost one, drew three and won twelve matches to overtake runners-up Kelvedon Hatch and take the title by four points.