PREVIEW: National Finals weekend is not good news for City of Peterborough's first team
City of Peterborough boys contest the national under 18 indoor finals this weekend, and that's not good news for the club's title-chasing first team.
The senior side are back in East Premier A Division action for the first time in six weeks with a tough home game against Harleston Magpies at Bretton Gate on Saturday (January 21, 11.30am).
But they will be without talented teenagers Nicky Reddy, Peter Taylor and Brendan Andrews who form a key part of the first-team squad as they will be in Telford trying to become English champions. Aussie Robbie Muir has left the club to visit Canada.
City have received a boost on the injury front though with leading marksman Sam Blunt fit again following a knee injury.
“Harleston will be tough opponents,” City skipper Ross Booth stated. “They picked up the pace after a slow start and they will be keen to get back in the top three. It’s a tougher game because we will be missing some of the younger squad member, but having Sam back is a big boost.
“We didn’t really want the season to stop before Christmas as we were playing so well and had some good momentum, but we’ve played a couple of friendlies to blow away the cobwebs.”
City won 10 matches in a row in the run-up to the Christmas break. They headed the table briefly, but Old Loughtonians have played twice recently to open up a three-point lead at the top.
They don’t play this weekend, so City would go back to the top with an unlikely nine-goal victory! City beat Harleston 4-3 earlier in the season.
City did lose both recent friendlies to Banbury and South Notts, but played reasonably well.
City of Peterborough Ladies are up to second in East Division One North after a crushing 7-1 win over St Ives at Bretton Gate last weekend.
Tierney Augustine led the way with a hat-trick, while Emma Faux (2), Jeorgia Carr and Robyn Gribble also scored. City have a tricky trip to Lincoln on Saturday.
Most of City’s rivals saw their matches postponed and a similar fate befell plenty of mens’ matches.
City mens seconds extended their lead at the top of the Premier B Division with a 7-0 rout of bottom club Wisbech.
But a new year didn’t bring a change to City thirds who remain bottom of Division One after losing a tight game 4-3 to Bourne Deeping firsts. Matt Carson (2) and Oscar Sadikot scored for City who have picked up just two points from 13 matches.
Bourne Deeping thirds were delighted with their 3-1 win over Division Five North West leaders Cambridge South thirds. Robin Edlington scored twice.
The first round of the National Mixed Trophy takes place this Sunday (January 22) with City of Peterborough hosting Bury St Edmunds.
Wisbech and Spalding are also in action at East London and Felixstowe respectively.
Saturday, January 21
Premier A Division: City of Peterborough v Harleston Magpies.
Premier B Division: Spalding v Blueharts, Wisbech v Norwich City.
Division One: City of Peterborough 3rds v Shefford & Sandy, Norwich 2nds v Bourne Deeping.
Division Two North: Cambridge City 4ths v March.
Division Three North West: Spalding 3rds v St Ives, Bourne Deeping 2nds v Spalding 2nds, Wisbech 2nds v City of Peterborough 4ths, Long Sutton 2nds v Horncastle.
Division Four North West: Wellingborough v Bourne Deeping 3rds, St Ives 2nds v City of Peterborough 6ths, City of Peterborough 5ths v Wisbech 3rds.
Division Five North West: Kettering 2nds v City of Peterborough 7ths, March 2nds v Cambridge City 6ths, City of Peterborough 8ths v Bourne Deeping 4ths.
Division Six North West (North): Spalding 5ths v Bourne Deeping 5ths, Long Sutton 4ths v Long Sutton 3rds, Bourne Deeping 6ths v Spalding 4ths, Alford 2nds v Wisbech 4ths.
Premier Division: Norwich City v Wisbech.
Division One North: Lincoln v City of Peterborough.
Division Two North West: Cambridge Nomads v Wisbech 2nds, Bourne Deeping v Spalding, City of Peterborough 2nds v Long Sutton.
Division Three North West: Spalding 2nds v St Ives 2nds, Wisbech 3rds v Haverhill, Horncastle v City of Peterborough 3rds.
Division Four North West (North): March v Bourne Deeping 2nds, Bourne Deeping 3rds v Spalding 3rds, Long Sutton 2nds v Louth 2nds, City of Peterborough 4ths v Skegness.
Sunday, January 22
NATIONAL MIXED TROPHY
First round: City of Peterborough v Bury St Edmunds, East London v Wisbech, Felixstowe v Spalding.