Maidenhead rise up to ninth after getting one over local rivals Slough

Matt Heller

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Maidenhead men’s 1sts leapt up to ninth in the South Central Men’s Premier Division 1 table off the back of a convincing 4-2 home win over local rivals Slough on Saturday.

Having gained confidence from their goalless draw with second placed Reading in mid-week, Phil Cowell’s side proved too strong for their near neighbours, clinically taking the chances which fell their way at Altwood.

Matt Heller scored a hat-trick and Sam Richardson scored their other goal.

Earlier in the season Maids dominated their away match at Slough but were frustrated by their hosts in a 1-1 draw.

Following the return of several key players to form and fitness in recent weeks, the club have progressed nicely beating Milton Keynes away in their last match before Christmas before kicking off the new year with a narrow defeat to Staines.

Reflecting on the victory, captain Phil Cowell said: “It was definitely a deserved win. We didn't play our best for the whole game but there were patches in there where we did enough, and we were the better team in the end.

“They lost their heads at the end and picked up quite a few cards, so we were able to see out the game quite comfortably in the end. A couple of their players got sin-binned for a couple of nasty fouls. It made life a lot easier for us at the end.

“On Tuesday against Reading it's the best we've played in a couple of seasons to be honest. We defended brilliantly as a team and everyone was showing great passion and desire, chasing down every ball. It looked like we were the fresher side, even though we've got some older players in our team, and we came away disappointed not to win.

“But to get a draw against the top of the league side was a big point. Not many other teams have managed that.”

This Saturday they visit Winchester where a win would see them leapfrog their hosts to move eighth.

Despite their indifferent form over the course of the season, the league table remains congested with only 11 points separating third placed Banbury from ninth placed Maids.

Maidenhead women’s 1sts failed to close the gap on the top four in South Central Premier Division 1 as they were beaten 2-1 by Oxford 1sts.

Maids found form before Christmas, winning four matches in a row before stumbling at home against Fareham (0-0) and losing to Oxford on Saturday. It leaves them 11 points adrift of Oxford in fourth heading into Saturday’s home game with third from bottom Sonning 1sts.

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