Non-League Preview

New Ryman season kicks off

Saturday

Division 1N

Harlow v Romford

Boro begin their new campaign with a tricky trip to Barrows Farm.


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Paul Martin’s men lost 4-1 on their last trip in March, after losing Alex Reed and Andy Edmunds to injury inside the opening quarter of an hour.

And that completed an unwanted double for Boro, following a 4-2 home defeat against the high-flying Hawks only a couple of weeks prior.

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Harlow beat Braintree and Leyton Orient XIs to get their pre-season campaign off to a good start, but then lost to Hornchurch and Chelmsford, before drawing with Thurrock, Barton and Hendon.

Romford have had a bit of a mixed bag themselves over the past few weeks, recording four wins, a draw and two defeats.

But those results count for nothing. There are three points on the line this weekend and both sides will be keen to get off to good starts.

A draw would represent just that for Boro against a Harlow side rated among the favourites for the title this season.

Sunday

Premier Division

Cray v Hornchurch

These two sides met exactly one year ago on August 21, 2010 on the opening day of last season.

And Martin Tuohy’s 11th-minute goal proved enough for Urchins to bank the points at Bridge Avenue.

But it proved a bit of a false dawn for Jimmy McFarlane’s men as they took only six points from a possible 24.

After a thumping 7-1 defeat at Tonbridge, they rallied to win seven and draw three of their next 10 games.

But play-off hopes faded in the closing weeks and Urchins finished four points adrift of the qualifying places in tenth.

Cray were just above them in ninth, albeit only on goal difference, suggesting there will again be little between the two clubs in south London this weekend.

Billed in some quarters as a clash between brains and brawn, it promises to be a closely-fought opening-day encounter.

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