Two teams with 100 per cent starts go head-to-head in the ChromaSport United Counties League Division One this weekend.
Blackstones and Thrapston Town have made the very early running this season and, for what it’s worth at this stage, sit in the top two positions in the table.
For Thrapston and boss Ian Walker, it has been an impressive effort given that the club are starting with their traditional run of away matches as they share their Chancery Lane home with the town’s cricket club.
A 3-1 victory at Bugbrooke was followed by an excellent 3-2 success at Olney Town last Friday night as Dave Goodman, Liam Hanley and Wayne Brown grabbed the goals while they could even afford the luxury of Jedd Whiteman missing a penalty.
Walker firmly believes Division One is as wide open this season as it has been for a while.
And he is hoping to see his team in the upper echelons of the table as the campaign progresses.
“I think Division One is going to be a great league this season, it really is wide open,” the Thrapston boss said.
“You can already see it shaping up to be really competitive and I think it is open to anyone to win.
“In the past couple of seasons, you’ve had the likes of Peterborough Sports and Daventry Town being pretty dominant but I don’t think there will be a team like that this time.
“For us, we have set our targets and if we could finish in the top six then I think that would be fantastic for us.
“We have started with two really tough away games so to come out of those with maximum points, it’s a fantastic start for us.
“It is always tricky because, with the cricket still going on, we always start with a run of away games.
“But we will look forward to the next one and Blackstones have also had a great start, which doesn’t surprise me because they came to our ground last season and really turned us over.
“They are a good side and it’s another difficult game for us but we will be ready for it.”
Thrapston are operating without a reserve team for this season and Walker explained: “We kept the nucleus of the squad from last season together but we have brought in some new players.
“We haven’t got a reserve team this season so we have got a strong squad to choose from and we are utilising it to the maximum at the moment because it’s that time of year when the lads still have holidays, weddings and other things going on.”
There was an early managerial casualty following an incredible result in UCL Division One last weekend.
Burton Park Wanderers were thrashed 15-0 by Harrowby United at Latimer Park and Dave Dent resigned as manager following the big loss.
It’s been another tough start to the season for Wanderers after they were beaten 3-0 by Blackstones in their first game of the campaign.
Jake Bailey and Chris Hull have taken charge of the team for the time being as they prepare for this weekend’s trip to Bourne Town, who have also lost their first two games of the season.
The club are now seeking applications for the vacant role and anyone interested should email chairman Mark Patrick to email@example.com by Monday.
Whitworth made it two wins out of two in the Premier Division with an eye-catching victory last weekend.
The newly-promoted Flourmen followed up the 5-0 win at Peterborough Northern Star with a 2-1 success over highly-fancied Deeping Rangers at London Road thanks to goals from Remy Brittain and Jordan Pendered.
This Saturday, James Mallows’ men make the trip to take on Leicester Nirvana, who were big 5-0 winners at Desborough Town on Tuesday night.
Rothwell Corinthians are without a game this weekend after they opened their Premier Division season with a 2-1 loss at Daventry Town last weekend. Lewis O’Dell was on target for Corinthians.