PUBLISHED: 16:44 18 August 2011
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Rivals scramble for late points
SNEL Premier Division
South Woodford v Ardleigh Green
Green captain Chris Cook was not too disheartened after his side’s heavy loss to Woodford Wells last weekend.
Green slipped back into the bottom two as a result, but only 21 points separate the bottom five teams going into the last three games of the season.
Woodford are just above that group in fifth but not out of danger yet themselves, so it should be a hard-fought encounter between two sides promoted last season and looking to maintain their top flight positions.
Buckhurst Hill v Upminster
Back-to-back defeats against Orsett and Fives have hit Upminster’s promotion campaign.
They trail second-placed Shenfield by 26 points, with table-topping Hill a further 22 points clear at the summit.
But Upminster, with a league cup final against Shenfield on August 29 to look forward to, are a match for any team on their day and will look to keep their hopes alive going into the final two weeks of the summer.
Harold Wood v Shenfield
Wood are facing a quick return to Division Two after suffering their tenth defeat of the season against fellow strugglers Chingford last weekend.
They lie 40 points adrift of safety with three games to go and host a Shenfield side still harbouring hopes of lifting the title.
June’s meeting between these two sides was abandoned as a draw, with Wood on the back foot at 140-8 in reply to Shenfield’s 195-8.
But even a win might not be enough to prolong Wood’s hopes of survival.
Hornchurch v GP & Romford
These two sides went into the 2010 campaign with hopes of being among the front-runners.
But Park are propping up the rest after only two wins in 15 and odds-on for relegation, while Hornchurch find themselves just above the drop zone after an inconsistent campaign.
They have won only one of their last six games (the July 16 clash at Chingford was washed out) and that success was against Harold Wood.
Essex County League Premier
Hawks v Hornchurch Athletic
Victory over second-placed Asian last weekend saw Athletic climb out of the relegation and up four places to fifth.
But this division is so tight, with only 16 points between them and bottom club Bow Green, that captain Neil Hutchison and his men must stay focused.
They have plenty of incentive against a Hawks side, who lie just three points back, after their July meeting was abandoned in controversial circumstances.
Athletic had reached 132-2 in 25.3 overs when play was halted and referred to a league committee.
Leyton County v Noak Hill Taverners
Taverners need just two points in east London from their final game of the season to clinch the title ahead of Hawks.
Promotion was secured a couple of weeks back and Mick Hodgson’s men are looking to go up with the silverware.
And with 12 successive wins under their belts, they look in fine form to get what they want.
Mid-Essex Division 3
Havering v South Woodham Ferrers
Nerves are jangling, a bit, at Broxhill Road after successive defeats sent Havering slipping from first to third place.
But they are only one point behind new leaders East Hanningfield and looking to set up a potential promotion decider with them next weekend (August 27).
Captain Ben Leworthy returns to the side following the recent birth of his son and is refusing to panic (about the cricket).
June’s meeting between these sides was wiped out by wet weather and South Woodham currently occupy a mid-table berth.
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