| SHORTWOOD UNITED F C NEWS |
Wood Presentation Evening - 23rd May
Shortwood held their annual presentation evening at Meadowbank on Friday 21st May.
After a sumptuous buffet Chairman Pete Webb opened the proceedings to vice President Bill Reay who spoke about the club’s spirit and entertainment. The Floodlit Cup Final was singled out , where Wood overcame a 3-0 first leg lead by their opponents Reading Town, before he made a special presentation to Mark Webb for his tremendous work on the ground.
The spirit within the club was a repetitive theme that rang through all the speeches. The Chairman then awarded his own award to Assistant Manager and Physio, Mark Sumpter, for his length of service and the tremendous job he does for the club.
John Evans confirmed that he would be staying on to have another crack at the title before presenting the first team awards. He also paid tribute to Mark Sumpter, the Committee and Des Meredith who has done a terrific job with the Reserves.
Supporters Player Of The Year – Matty Collins
Players Player – Matty Collins
Most Improved Player- Jake Parrott
Managers Player – Luke Benneyworth and Matt Bennett.
Next it was Des Meredith for the Reserves to make his awards:
Supporters Player – Liam Meredith
Players Player – Ryan Meredith
Most Improved Player – Ashton Herbert
Managers Player – Ryan Meredith.
Jim Cunneen announced the Chairman had been nominated and had won for the GFA Volunteer of the year award. Amongst the other presentations Brian Rossiter gave Andy Hoskins a hard back book of the pictures of the striker he had taken over the past year.
Last, but by no means least, flowers a vote of thanks were given to the ladies who had worked so hard to lay on such a great buffet – Mo and Wendy Meredith and Judy Yorke.
After all the speeches and presentations everyone retreated to the bar for a night of comedy and the odd drink which lasted long into the night!
Death Of Club Stalwart - 19th May
It is with very deep regret that Shortwood has lost one of its very best supporters as Bill Lewis has died after a short illness. Bill was 75 years of age and could always be found before home games looking after the car park. Bill played for the club as a centre half in his day and came back over 20 years ago and went on to serve on the Committee and be Vice Chairman of the football club. He also helped maintain the ground equipment.
Both Bill's sons - Steve and Brian - also played for the club, and he is also survived by his wife Marie.
Everyone connected with the club sends Marie, Steve and Brian their most heartfelt condolences. He will be greatly missed.
From 'Blanketman' To 'Woodman' - 4th December
Shortwood United solved their goalkeeping problem on Thursday evening by securing the transfer of Richard Barrett, who was on Witney United's player roster but was unable to secure the 'keepers jersey'.
Barrett has been a thorn in the side when playing in previous games against the Blanketmen. An excellent all round keeper Richard will bring a lot of experience to the squad and should make his debut for 'The Wood' on Saturday!
Back To Promotion Bid - 6th November
Shortwood will look to get their FTL Futbol Hellenic League promotion bid back on track tomorrow at Witney United. With no league game in the past fortnight due to commitments in the Bluefin Sports Insurance Hellenic League Cup, Wood have slipped to third in the Premier Division table.
Almondsbury Town jumped over the Meadowbank outfit with a 5-0 demolition of Fairford Town on Wednesday.
Wood are three points behind the Almonds, with both sides having played 14 games and six points behind league leaders Reading Town, who have played a game more.
Goals from James Singh. Alex Allard, Andy Hoskins and Matt Bennett helped secure a 4-1 cup win over Trowbridge Town last week. It was their second consecutive high-scoring win after the 5-2 demolition of Marlow Town.
Different Challenge - 30th October
Shortwood United will swap the pressures of their Hellenic League promotion challenge for the joys of the Bluefin Insurance Challenge Cup tomorrow.
John Evans' men welcome Hellenic Division One West side Trowbridge Town to Meadowbank tomorrow on the back of an encouraging league performance last week. Wood defeated Marlow United 5-2 to leave them right on the coat tails of Hellenic Premier leaders Reading Town. Two goals from veteran striker Andy Hoskins (pictured) and further strikes from Matty Collins, Matt Bennett and Mish Green helped secure Shortwood's tenth win in 14 Hellenic League fixtures.
Maintain Pressure - 9th October
Shortwood United will aim to keep the pressure on Premier Division leaders Reading with victory over Ardley United tomorrow.
Wood are now four points off the top dogs after Reading maintained their unbeaten start to the season with a 2-0 win at Malmesbury Victoria last Saturday while John Evans' men were on FA Vase duty
Shortwood, who are unbeaten in seven league games, won that Vase tie 3-1 against Winchester City and they also progressed in the Hellenic Floodlit Cup by winning 4-0 at Hungerford Town in the first round on Tuesday night.
Mid-table Ardley went through on the same evening, courtesy of a 3-2 victory at Fairford Town.
Former Vase Winners At Shortwood - 2nd October
Wood entertain former FA Vase winners Winchester City when they kick-off in the competition tomorrow. Winchester won the Vase in 2004, beating AFC Sudbury 2-0 in the final at Birmingham City's St Andrews Ground.
But the Captials have fell on hard times since that famous day with relegation from the Southern League last season sending them back to the Wessex League after three years at a higher level. Winchester last met Shortwood in the Vase in the 2002/03 season when they won 3-2 on their way to the quarter-finals and Wood will be eager to avenge that defeat tomorrow.
Shortwood's best ever performance was when they reached the fifth round in the 1981-82 season. In that last 16 tie they lost 1-0 to local rivals and eventual Vase winners Forest Green Rovers.
In-form Wood were 2-1 winners at Highworth Town in midweek but victory for league leaders Reading Town on the same night meant John Evans' team stayed one point behind their rivals. The top two played out a drab goalless draw last weekend but there was more excitement at Highworth as James Singh netted the winner four minutes from time.
Wood are unbeaten in seven league games while Winchester finally recorded their first win of the season with a 3-1 home win against Moneyfields in midweek. They had failed to win in their previous 10 games and are down in the bottom half of the table.
Top Two Meet - 25th September
First meets second in the Premier Division tomorrow when Shortwood United visit leaders Reading Town.
Shortwood, last season's runners-up, will leap-frog Reading and go top with victory but John Evans' side face a tough task
Town are unbeaten after eight games and no-one in the division has conceded less goals than the Scours Lane club.
In-form Wood have won their last three league games, including a 5-1 success at Hook Norton in midweek, that took their tally to 14 goals in the winning run. Alex Allard (penalty), Ross Casey, Matt Bennett, Harry Etheridge and Matty Collins were all on target in the latest victory.
Defender Luke Bennyworth played a large part of the game in goal after a shoulder injury to debutant Craig Barnfield.
Wood can boast a 100 per cent away record but Reading have only conceded one goal on their home ground so far this season.
Back In League Action - 18th September
Shortwood United will turn their focus back to a Premier Division promotion bid after crashing out of the FA Cup in midweek.
League rivals Witney United knocked John Evans' men out with a 2-1 victory in their first qualifying round replay, following Saturday's 3-3 draw at Meadowbank.
Witney opened the scoring on 36 minutes when they broke at speed and forced a corner from which Lee Henderson powered his free header in from six yards. Wood equalised after 65 minutes when Matt Collins sent over a cross that dipped as it beat everyone and went in low at the far post through John Okole's hands. But with 77 minutes gone Andrew Younie broke away, cut in and sent a dipping shot over Rich Thomas but under the bar to restore Witney's lead
Wood pushed for a second equaliser but they had a 'goal' disallowed in the closing seconds when James Singh's header was ruled out and Andy Hoskins was sent off for a second yellow card when he voiced his displeasure at the referee's decision.
Wood, who are fourth in the league, now face an Ascot United side who are down in the bottom three after eight defeats in 10 games. The Yellamen, last season's Division One East runners-up, have conceded 26 goals in seven away games this season - including a 7-0 defeat at lowly Highworth Town.
On Course? - 11th September
Shortwood United can remain on course for a repeat of last year's FA Cup heroics by beating Hellenic Premier rivals Witney United at Meadowbank.
Wood reached the second qualifying round before losing to Havant & Waterlooville, who led Liverpool at Anfield in the previous season's competition. John Evans' Wood have a reputation for cup runs and won four straight games, including 2-0 over Gloucester City, to reach the third qualifying round in 2007-08.
They were eventually knocked out by a Maidenhead United side who were managed by Johnson Hippolyte, boss of Yeading when they reached the third round and played Newcastle United in 2005. Tomorrow's first qualifying round opponents Witney finished one place and five points behind Shortwood as they were pipped to the title by Hungerford on goal difference.
The two sides have met in the league this season with Wood recording a 1-0 win thanks to James Singh's goal.
Shortwood Complete Meadowbank Upgrade - 6th August
FTL Futbol Hellenic Premier side Shortwood are looking forward to the new season with a fresh outlook after major works during the close season.
The Howard Webb stand has been completely revamped with 112 permanent seats put in and a further 50 seater stand has been erected on the opposite side of the ground.
Together with new dug-outs, turnstiles, and all the other works throughout the summer the club is now justifyably proud of its facilies which comply with the current requirements for promotion to Level 4 and the opportunity of Southern League football should they be fortunate to win the Hellenic League this season.
The management of Shortwood United would like to say a massive thank you and well done to all those who worked so hard to complete the project.
'Wood Hit Jackpot' - 2nd July
Shortwood United have hit the jackpot in the FA Cup and Vase as they have received home draws in both!
Ironically Wood play sides from the Wessex League in both cups - last term they beat Moneyfields before losing to Bemertom Heath Harlequins. In the Extra Preliminary Round of the FA Cup they will play Blackfield & Langley who were promoted from Division 1 last season from 2nd place. Should Wood win they will be at home to either Romsey or Hayling Island who finished 11th and 16th respectively. Dates for those games are: 15th August and 29th August
In the FA Carlsberg Vase Wood have been exempted to the 1st Round proper when they will play Winchester City at Meadowbank on 3rd October. City finished bottom of the Southern League South Division last season, following a failed protest to the FAregarding points deducted for playing an illegible player, and will play in the Wessex this season.
Early July Training for 'The Wood' - 22nd June
Pre-Season training will start for Shortwood United on Monday 6th July followed by Wednesday 8th July at Archway school. Sessions start at 7pm. Training will then continue every Monday and Wednesday thereafter. New and Old faces are most welcome to attend and players can ring John Evans on 07817 946166 or Mark Sumpter on 07878 647693 for further details.
Most of last seasons squad have already committed themselves to having another tilt at the title – including Alton Axton and Matty Collins and Wood will be welcoming back former favorite Ashley Thomas. James Singh returns from long term injury and John Evans is pleased to welcome defender Joe Macklin from Hungerford Town and is working hard to strengthen the squad further. Work also continues behind the scenes with new dug outs being put in as well as further covered seating opposite the main stand.
Shortwood United have also announced their pre season fixtures and start with the curtain raiser, a trip to local side Brimscombe and Thrupp on the 21st July followed by a trip to Moneyfields on Saturday 25th July. Moneyfields were one of Woods’ FA Vase opponents last year. They then have four home games. Yate come to Meadowbank on the 28th July followed by Bishops Cleeve on Friday 31st. Cinderford are the visitors on Tuesday 4th August and they finish with a visit from North Leigh on Friday 7th August. The kick off times for the evening games are 7.30 apart from the Brimscombe game which is 7.00.
Meanwhile the Reserves have a couple of games arranged as well. On the 29th July they travel to Slimbridge for a 19.00 kick off and on SUNDAY the 9th August Taverners come to Meadowbank for a 5 pm kick off. The Reserves also play Hatherley Rangers, away, in the 1st Round of the Reg Davis Memorial Trophy on Wednesday 12th August – ko 6.30 pm