Duo face Festive derbies

Wisbech Town Football Action V Huntingdon ANL-141221-214523009
Wisbech Town Football Action V Huntingdon ANL-141221-214523009

Fenland’s two most senior football sides face festive derbies in the next few days.

Wisbech Town go to Holbeach United on Friday (Boxing Day, 3pm) in the ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Premier Division.

Also in their final game of 2014, fifth-spot March Town United entertain 11th-position Downham Town on Saturday at the GER ground in the Thurlow Nunn League Division One.

Wisbech, unbeaten in the league since early November, are in fourth position following results at the weekend, while Holbeach are second.

Fenmen manager Dick Creasey said: “We will go there full of confidence and it will be a really good game.”

Missing will be the unavailable Nathan Horne and Steve Reid and the injured Josh Ford, Billy Smith and Nick Bishop.

Ford (metatarsal foot injury) is a fortnight away from training, while assistant boss Paul Cousins had an operation on his knee on Saturday.

Creasey added: “Paul had keyhole surgery to clean up the knee and hopes to be back training within two to three weeks.”

Meanwhile, Downham manager Bob Warby is no stranger to the Hares, having been assistant boss to Paul Crosbie, the predecessor to current joint March manager Chris Bartlett.

Downham have settled into a comfortable mid-table side and have proved difficult to defeat of late as they are on a four-game unbeaten run.

Bartlett said: “There was a chance that Bob would get involved with us, but he felt it wasn’t for him.

“He seems a decent, honest, straightforward guy and is doing a decent job there.”

The Hares’ weekend game away at Team Bury was postponed a day in advance because of an unplayable pitch, which means top scorer Dan Woods serves a one-game ban against Downham instead. Lewis McManus is also suspensed.

Bartlett said of Woods’ absence: “It’s a massive loss. Dan has scored nine in the last 11 games but it is one just game.

“It’ll be a big and committed game for us and it probably won’t be one for the purists. We expect a few more people there and we have only lost three at home in the league all season.

“We set out to get two points per game over the season and we’re just behind that. It’s too early to talk about a promotion push as realistically we’re about seventh because other teams have got games in hand.”

On Saturday the Fenmen beat visitors Huntingdon Town 2-1 thanks to Danny Beaumont’s late header from a cross by Stuart Cobb.

Matt Lunn’s 26th minute goal separated the sides at half-time, while Chris Jones levelled for Huntingdon.

Creasey added: “I’m delighted with the win. Huntingdon are a good side.”

Wisbech: Jordan, Horne, Fairweather, Wilson, Spafford, Lunn (Bayliss), Reid, Millson, Cobb, Treacher (J Smith), Beaumont. Sub not used: Bishop. Attendance: 154.

More Wisbech fixtures have been released (UCL unless stated), January: 3 Northampton Sileby Rgrs (a); 10 Wellingborough Tn (a); 14 (Cambs Invitation Cup) Cambridge City (a); 17 Harborough Tn (h); 20 (now League Cup) PNS (a); 24 Oadby Tn (a); 31 Long Buckby (a). February: 3 Sleaford Tn (a); 7 Sileby Rgs (h); 14 Harrowby United (a); 17 Boston Tn (a); 28 Long Buckby (h).