Hellenic League Division Two South
Saturday 28 th August 2021
LETCOMBE 1 WANTAGE TOWN DEVELOMENT 4
Letcombe were deservedly beaten in the opening game of their league campaign by local rivals Wantage Town development. Letcombe had a number of vital players missing because of the Reading pop festival, holidays and injury, but Wantage also had playing unavailable, with defender Luke Faircloth playing in goal. Letcombe welcomed new signing Isaac Pearson to their ranks, and he had a promising debut.
Wantage had the perfect start with a goal in the first minute. A cross from the right was parried by home keeper Jack North, and new signing Emmanuel Ali was on hand to tap home. Letcombe`s cause was not helped wnen Joe Blackwell limped off with a knee injury having just returned from a lengthy lay-off with a snapped achilles. Josh Fowler went close for Letcombe, but Wantage looked the more dangerous side, and they increased their lead after 41 minutes. A corner was only partially cleared, and although North deflected a shot onto the bar, Luke Ballard drove home the rebound. Letcombe reduced the deficit in the last minute of the half, Josh Fowler placing his low shot inside the far post after good work from Isaac Pearson.
Faircloth turned a fierce long-range effort from Greg Nutley over the bar, but Wantage increased their lead mid-way through the second half when Harry Broad ventured forward and drove a shot just inside the near post. The visitors made the game safe soon afterwards when Ali spun to place a low shot into the bottom corner. Chad Abrams was harshly cautioned by referee Jake Hillier who otherwise had an excellent game and should be congratulated.
There were some good personal performances for Letcombe, with Chad Abrams outstanding in midfield, but it was a below par team performance with too many players giving the ball away needlessly. Letcombe will hope that their missing players will be available for their short trip to Faringdon on 4 th September, and should have new signing Jordan Pierce in their squad.