Royston set their sights on promotion

PUBLISHED: 17:08 17 January 2008 | UPDATED: 14:21 04 May 2010

Royston men s IV won an essential league match to cement their position as surprise contenders for promotion. An excellent 3-0 win against Broxbourne VI saw Royston continue to romp up the table into third place, with six victories from 11 games. A rearra

Royston men's IV won an essential league match to cement their position as surprise contenders for promotion.

An excellent 3-0 win against Broxbourne VI saw Royston continue to romp up the table into third place, with six victories from 11 games.

A rearrangement of a postponed December match this game was also nearly called off, but 11-man Royston opted to play on against their 15-man opponents.

Fine play by Royston's outnumbered old guard gave them a 2-0 half-time lead,through Tim Yow and Paul Visagie's short corner­ nutmeg.

Despite pressure from fresh-legged Broxbourne, Royston's defence closed ranks, before Steve Weldon added a third.

Buoyant after a great team performance, captain Colin Smith said: "This is the best we have played all season.

"Our shape, patience, and tenacity hurt Broxbourne today.

"They didn't know how to handle us."

Royston men's III beat Letchworth 3-1 in a friendly with an accomplished display.

With Royston's good structure and discipline evident, Letchworth never got into the game, stifled by the home side's defence and out-gunned.

Arnie Whitaker scored Royston's first, lobbing the keeper after a ghosting run past three defenders.

Further second-half pressure yielded more goals, Nick Freeman smashing into the roof of the net from close range.

Whitaker got his second after another scintillating run, exchanging passes with Freeman before wrong-footing the keeper.

Following a rare Royston defensive lapse, Letchworth mounted an equally rare attack to score a ­consolation goal ten minutes from time.

With league matches resuming, the thirds are now poised to defend top spot in Division 7.

Royston men's V faced arch-rivals Stevenage in a friendly, eventually ­losing 3-1

After a scrappy start, Stevenage V's ageing but more experienced players made their mark despite Royston's staunch defensice work..

A well worked goal gave Stevenage the advantage, breaking the deadlock, and they added another goal from a short corner.

Soon after, Nigel Philips' firm strike was deflected in over the goalkeeper off a defender's stick, giving Royston a stake in the game as well.

However, Stevenage scored a contentious third just before half-time to seal the win, coming from a dangerous pass into the area.

Royston rallied in the second half, led by man-of-the-match Ed Weatherfield, but were unable to capitalise.

Royston Ladies II, seeking a win following bad results, tightened their game to record their first ­victory in four matches.

A convincing 2-0 away win at Berkhampsted & Hemel, with a goal in each half, saw a return to form.

Excellent performances from Natasha Greenstein and player-of-the-match Laura Simpson heaped pressure on Berkhampsted.

Royston were rewarded with a goal from Kirsty Penfold midway through the first half, her first of the season, after Lucy Davison's saved shot fell kindly.

Davison added a second in the second half, her 18th, settling the match, and Royston were unlucky not to score more.

They now lie third in the league, behind Harpenden.

Royston ladies III finally got a thoroughly deserved win, with hat-trick heroine Heather Polge helping to see of Rothamstead.

Despite an eventually ­comfortable 4-1 score line, it was Rothamstead who started the brighter, scoring a superb top-left corner goal.

But this spurred Royston to take complete charge of the match, Gemma Whitby equalising from a Sarah Warren Cross.

A half time talk from coach Paul Visagie urged them on, with Polge netting her first shortly after the break.

Polge's second came from a short corner, diverting Lisa Thompson's strike goalwards, before she scored her third soon afterwards, putting the match beyond doubt.

Royston's strike force was ably supported by notable performances from right-winger Warren and Di Hassen in centre-midfield.

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