It was a winning weekend for both our local SCFL division-two sides, with Bosham and Sidlesham each registering victories and clean sheets.
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Bosham 2 Alfold 0
SCFL division two
Defending division-two champions Bosham showed they are not about to give up their title without a fight as they continued recent strong form to take the points against current leaders Alfold at Walton Lane.
The visitors made a fast start on a cold but sunny afternoon and could have edged in front as a swift attack resulted in the dangerous Gary Pritchard going close with a spectacular volley that went just wide.
Bosham began to get a foothold and Graeme Dowden was a becoming a real threat in attack and the pacy Alex Barnes had a golden chance to break the deadlock for the Robins as a lovely ball into the area caused panic. It arrived at the feet of Barnes near the back stick but the striker could only fire a shot back across goal which did not test keeper Luis Correia.
Tom Familton was on the end of a corner with a towering header on the half-hour, but Sam James cleared the ball off the line.
Minutes later the Robins’ probing attacks finally paid dividends when top scorer Callum Coker broke the deadlock.
Bradley Miles, who was instrumental all afternoon, found space outside the area and let fly with an effort on goal. Correia made a bit of a hash of it and Coker nipped in the steal the ball and slot it into the unguarded net.
Minutes after the restart, Nick Hall pulled off an outstanding save to deny Kieron Purkis – then Alfold’s task was made tougher when Correia saw red for handball outside his area, heaping the pressure on the frustrated Maroons.
Just before the hour Purkis was through on goal only to shoot wide.
Midway through the second half Bosham gained a second goal through Jake Lafferty. A low cross into the area saw Coker dummy it, enabling Lafferty to bury his effort into the back of the net.
Bosham continued to push for more with substitute Alfie Smith scuffing a shot just wide and Michael Jepson coming off the bench to surge through twice only to see the opportunities go begging.
Alfold had only scraps to feed off and at the final whistle Matt Docherty was named man of the match for his strong performance leading the back line.
Bosham were delighted to end Alfold’s long unbeaten run to send a firm message to the rest of the title challengers.
Bosham’s visit Worthing Town on Saturday has been postponed.
Bosham: Nick Hall, Harry Bedford, Bradley Miles, Louis Bell, Alex Barnes, Matt Docherty, Sam James, Callum Coker, Pat Bulbeck, Graeme Dowden and Jake Lafferty. SUBS: Michael Jepson, Andy Probee, Ian Reddington and Alfie Smith.
Sidlesham 7 Rottingdean 0
SCFL division two
A pitch in fine condition made for a superb footballing display from the home side, who opened the scoring after just six minutes through the returning Tom Bayley.
After this they never looked back and further goals from Bayley (three), Joe Bennett (two) and Liam Bush gave the home side their biggest home win of the season so far.
With two of the top sides to play over the next few weeks it’s put Sidlesham back among the frontrunners – but there are tough games approaching.
A young Sidlesham reserve side made the short trip to Pagham and came away with a creditable 0-0 draw.
This Saturday was due to see Sids host league leaders Alfold (3pm) but it fell victim to the wintry weather.