Royal Ascot – Princes Risborough – there is a tenuous regal link between the two names but both town’s sides will seek to be kings for the day on Saturday as Ascot United and Risborough Rangers face off in the Emirates FA Cup Preliminary Round (3pm).
Rangers have enjoyed a good start to their Spartan South Midlands League campaign. A creditable opening day draw at Leighton Town (1-1) preceded a 1-0 victory over Lydney Town in the FA Cup (att: 110), despite playing most of the game with ten men. And, they found their scoring boots last weekend with a thumping 7-0 league win over Broadfields United (att: 102) who had themselves won their opening match.
This is Rangers’ first season at Step five. Having spent the past two seasons in the Hellenic League Division 1 (East), they ended with a staggering record of not having lost ANY league game in the 19/20 (P23 W20 D3) or 20/21 (P6 W6) campaigns. So, they haven’t lost a league game since early 2019, and that was enough to earn them promotion to Step five based on the average of their last two curtailed seasons!!! They’ve also been further than Ascot in the FA Cup, a foray to the 2nd qualifying round in 20/21 where FA Cup ‘heroes’ Chichester City dumped them out – Chichester having had a memorable run to the 2nd round proper in the season before. Ascot have never been beyond the first qualifying round since first appearing in the FA Cup in 2011; beaten in a replay at Tonbridge Angels back in 16/17.
So, it’s a tough test for The Yellamen although the midweek mauling of Tadley Calleva boosted their confidence heading into the match, which will be replayed should the scores be level after ninety minutes.
Match report to follow.