West London Veterans League Week 9 Preview

#WeAreAscot.

11 January 2024

West London Vets’ League

Week 9 Preview

Christmas has been and gone, so it’s time for the hardy souls of the West London Vets’ League (WLVFL) to get out and run off the turkey and mince pies. Week 9 of the 2023-24 season beckons.

30 of the WLVFL sides are in league action across the four divisions while Ascot United and Nottsborough meet in Kingston in the first round of the League Cup. Ascot haven’t played for what feels like months on end, so new gaffer Jon Keough will be looking to ensure that the Yellas are up and at it from the get go. Nottsborough, meanwhile, will be hoping that the cup offers a bit of respite from what’s been a pretty dismal league campaign so far. There weren’t many shocks in the FA Cup 3rd round last week, will Nottsborough buck that trend and provide one here? Time will tell.

TOP PLAY SECOND IN THE PREM

There’s no doubting what the game of the day is in the Premier Division. Top of the table West London Rams host second placed Chelsea Vets. As things stand two points separate the sides and although it’s not quite win or bust for Chelsea, you do feel that if the Rams come out with the three points then they’ll be in the box seat for the title.

With third placed Ascot in cup action that gives Bank of England the chance to leapfrog them onto the podium. They travel to Poly. Poly are having a better season this year than they did last, but they will still be anxiously looking over their shoulders at those below them. You’d expect BoE to come through, but Poly have plenty of good reasons to give this one a good go.

Elsewhere, Claygate Royals Hares will be hoping to close the gap to the sides immediately above them. They sit ninth but will be quietly confident that they can take something off mid-table Croxley. The final game of the day sees fifth placed Whippet Wanderers travel to eighth placed KPR. The Whippets will be hoping that a win might see them third come 4pm on Saturday, whereas KPR need the points to keep out of the relegation slots. 

HERSHAM LOOK TO GET BACK ON THE HORSE 

Hersham Southside start 2024 in a strong position in Division One. They did lose their first game in nearly 18 months in the run up to Christmas, but they are still four points clear of the chasing pack. They travel to a struggling West Kensington Kings on Saturday.

Wandsworth currently sit second, and they’ll be hoping to make the most of home advantage when they welcome an improving Double H. It was, after all, Double H that inflicted that defeat (5-2) on Hersham Southside.

Army Crusaders have had a decent first half of the season and they sit third. They’ll be hoping to continue their decent run of form when they welcome Laleham & Kempton. The final game of the day in this division sees Civil Service travel to Actonians. The hosts really do need the points; they are currently four off safety at the bottom. Indeed, a win for Actonians, and Civil Service will be in danger of being dragged into the relegation dog fight. 

INTRIGUING FIXTURES ALL ROUND IN DIV 2

Top play bottom in Division Two. Bank of England, still after their first points of the campaign, travel to play high-flying Jamrock. Jamrock will be pleased to finally be hosting a match…of the eight league games they’ve played this season, six have been away.

Elsewhere, the two promoted sides from 2022-23 meet at the Racecourse Ground in Ascot. Latimer Road are the visitors. Both teams will feel that promotion is still on the radar, although defeat on Friday night might put a hefty dent in those particular ambitions.

Third placed Old Meads play fourth placed Old Tiffs. Both currently have 13 points (the same as Ascot 2s) so, again, a win and promotion talk might get just a little more feverish.

Two of the bottom three also lock horns when Putney Vale Rangers (PVR) travel to Old Lyonians. When they get their full side out PVR are a handful for anyone. The big question is what will their availability be like this time round. A win there and they certainly won’t have given up hope of a gate-crashing the promotion race.

RUISLIP LOOK TO GRASP THE NETTLE

Ruislip Rangers are arguably best placed to win Division Three, although that will involve winning some of their games in hand. They currently sit second, a point behind Xaveriansbut with two more games to play.

On Saturday Ruislip travel to a rapidly improving MMB. The Milkmen currently sit fourth following an impressive pre-Christmas run.

Clapham, meanwhile, host Croxley Green. That’s a top v bottom encounter, so your money would ordinarily be on Clapham – generally stronger at home than away anyway – to pocket the three points there. 

The final game in this division and indeed of the weekend sees AFC Hampton host Claygate Royals’ Hounds. Always a keenly contested fixture.

Go well everyone.

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