SIL PREVIEW: Henley Athletic flying high

Jason Fulcher, the manager of SIL Division One leaders Henley Athletic, is under no illusions of the tough task that faces his promotion-chasing team, but insists his players would be able to cope should they make the step up into the Senior Division.

Former Stonham Aspal boss Fulcher took over at the club during last season and guided his team to the brink of promotion, only to miss out by a point from runners-up Wenhaston United.

Now, having kept the nucleus of his predominantly young side together – many of whom played youth football at the club – Fulcher is hoping to go one better with his team this season.

And with five wins out of five, you wouldn’t bet against them celebrating come the end of the season.

However, ahead of tomorrow’s game at AFC Crowley, Fulcher knows the job is nowhere near done.

“The club has great facilities at Henley, the County FA uses the ground for semi-finals and finals, and everything is in place to move up to Senior football,” said Fulcher.

“I think we are constantly improving as a team.

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“A lot of teams get promoted to the Senior Division with older players and then have to supplement their squad once they have won promotion.

“I think we could go up and stay there with the players we have.

“But I am under no illusions. We have won our first five games, but there is still a lot of hard work to be done.

“All we are doing as a club is enjoying our football and trying to maintain our position.”

He added: “We like to play good, passing football, which is quick moving, in a fast and physical division and I think our game could be more suited to the Senior league where you get a bit more time on the ball.”

Elsewhere in Division One, second-bottom Ipswich Athletic host third-bottom Saxmundham Sports, Ipswich Exiles, in fifth, are at home to fourth-placed Claydon, Mendlesham host rock-bottom Parkside, Ransomes Sports travel to Sporting 87 and St Johns and Trimley host Bramford and Framlingham Town respectively.

In the Senior Division, Crane Sports host Coplestonians and Leiston St Margarets travel to East Bergholt United.

In the day’s other games, Grundisburgh are at home to Old Newton, Haughley host Achilles, Felixstowe Harpars travel to Stanton, Wenhaston host Melton St Audry’s and bottom-of-the-table Westerfield are away at Wickham Market.

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