Sunday football scene

by PHIL RAVITZ THE new year and the opening weekend of 2008 showed no change in the fortunes of Hackney and Leyton League Div 1 leaders Clapton Rangers, who look nailed on for promotion after crushing second-placed Wentworth Arms 6-1 in their first versu


THE new year and the opening weekend of 2008 showed no change in the fortunes of Hackney and Leyton League Div 1 leaders Clapton Rangers, who look nailed on for promotion after crushing second-placed Wentworth Arms 6-1 in their first versus second meet.

A hat-trick apiece from the top-scoring duo of Nathan Scarborough and Daniel Senghore did the damage for the Clapton Park side, with Lee Smith providing Wentworth's only reply. There now looks little to stop Clapton.

Mile End leap-frogged Wentworth into second place with their 4-2 win over Shakespeare in a Tower Hamlets derby. Abraham Mahmood and Liam George got a pair apiece for Mile End.

Army & Navy missed the chance to get closer to the top when they were beaten 2-1 by New George, for whom Ian Baker and Simon Matson scored. Lee Makepeace got the A & N goal.

In the Premier, champions Lapton retain top spot after a 3-0 success against third-placed St George's, Islington. Wale (2) and Dean Robinson were Lapton's marksmen.

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Black Meteors are just behind the Dalston side in second place and they kept up the pressure with a 2-0 win, earned by two late goals from Mutela Mohammed and Silas Owusu.

The victory also ended the recent good run from London Aprilia, that won them the December monthly award for the top division.

Three Compasses are up to fourth after a narrow 3-2 win over Pollards. Chris Greenhow, from the penalty spot, Daniel Fitzpatrick and Daniel Little netted for the Dalston side. Luke Rowland got both Pollard replies.

Bancroft are just behind Compasses following a 3-0 success against Santos, gained by goals from Wayne Gittens, Justin Weatherman and Westley Erskine.

A shock 6-1 victory for Prince Regent, over Albion Manor, lifted them out of the bottom two, with Jamie Wakefield netting four of them. Nicholas Clegg and Garry Clayton scored Regent's other goals. Richard Hudson got Manor's consolation.

In Div 2, leaders Lancresse Rangers had a closer tussle than many would have expected against bottom side Jay Cubed, winning 3-1. Toks Williams, Andy Benskin and Adrian Sterling got the Lancresse goals, with Darren Dennis netting Jay Cubed's reply.

Second placed Old George E2 had an easier passage in their 6-3 victory over Big Kahuna. Andy Smorthit was equal top scorer of the day with a personal quartet of goals, while Ben Clark got the other two. Tom Hughes bagged a hat-trick for Big Kahuna, but his treble was in vain.

Midfield are a team moving in the right direction. They are now up to third after a tight 3-2 victory over Homerton Rangers. David O'Connell, Daniel Piggott and an own goal were on the mark for Midfield. Mario Allen got both Homerton replies.

In Div 3, Hospital Tavern held on to top place with a 3-2 victory over East London, thanks to Johnny Kelly, Richard Davies and John Dalvz. Jag Phull and Patrick Sheahan scored for East London.

But FC Highstone stay hard on the Tavern's heels and have a game in hand. They made short work of Old George IIs 6-1, with Micky Harvey turning the third four-goal performance of the day with his quartet of strikes. Chris Chyka and Jack Wilmott also scored for Highstone.

Maynell got the better of Tottenham Phoenix 6-3, Raymond Richardson with two, Simon Pascal, Mark Zepler, Floyd Moulton and Pa Nije netting the Maynell goals.

The fixture between Florist Arms and Wenlock Arms was abandoned when Florist, having begun with just nine men, had their ranks depleted even further by two sending-offs. That forced the abandonment as they had fewer than the statuory eight men.

Hoxton's Wenlock were leading 2-1 at the time that a halt was called to proceedings.


DIVISION One leaders Meath United showed their fighting credentials by coming back strongly to earn a 3-3 draw at Prospect in the East London Sunday League after trailing 3-0 at one stage.

Prospect scored three times in 10 minutes just before the break but Meath hit back with an own goal, a Danny Bradshaw strike and a Timmy Hamley free-kick.

The pair would seem to have this season's top division between them, as they have played less games than their nearest rivals.

Hackney Downs 'A' beat Crownfield 4-2 to go second, thanks to a brace from Sheldon James and further strikes by Ishmale Henshaw and Adrian McDonald.

Elsewhere, Beaumont International eased their relegation fears by thrashing a struggling Reama side 7-2.

Poplar United remain rooted to the bottom after a 5-3 defeat to Rolls Park, who lie fifth in the table.

In Division Two, leaders SK Veleciku recovered from their pre-Christmas blip by comfortably beating Clapton Rangers 4-1 to increase their lead at the top.

Larkswood made it 11 goals from their last two games with a 6-0 thrashing of Heath Park, while Leyton United were edged out by the odd strike in seven, going down 4-3 against Royal Standard Rangers.

East Moore went goal crazy against Byron Athletic winning 10-2, while Arbour Athletic earned a 2-2 draw against Leyton Predators thanks to efforts from John Gilroy and Owen Casper.

Division Three leaders Newham Rangers maintained their 100 per cent winning record with a 9-1 thrashing of rock-bottom Chettle Court.

The highest-scoring game of the day and of the season so far saw mid-table Stratford Juniors thump poor Anadolu 18-4.

Meanwhile, Juva 'B' were overpowered 9-0 by an in-form William Fitt Youth Tigers.

William Fitt Lions and New North Rangers were awarded the points from their respective games with Juva 'A' and London United Football Academy after their opponents were unable to fulfill the fixtures.

n Highlights of this weekend's programme are Meath United's meeting with Hackney Downs 'A' in a first-versus-second clash in Division One.

Fourth-place Prospect, who have games in hand, play relegation candidates Reama.

In Division Two, the bottom pair - Byron Athletic and Leyton United - face each other.

Leyton are still looking for their first points of the season.

Division Three sees bottom side Chettle Court Rangers play William Fitt Lions, while fourth-place New North Rangers take on leaders Newham, in what looks the best clash.

New North Rangers will have to be at their best as Newham have won all 10 games so far.

For the latest results, fixtures and league tables, see this week's Gazette.