After a week of intensive training, Ashford embark upon their opening pre-season match on Saturday, when they travel to CCL Division One side Sheerwater. Although the majority of last season’s squad are back in training, there are a number of triallists at the club and it is likely that several of them will be given an opportunity tomorrow to see what they can do.
The address of the ground is Sheerwater Recreation Ground, Blackmore Crescent, Sheerwater, GU21 5QJ and kick-off is 3.00 p.m.
Ashford then have another low key friendly on Thursday evening, when they will entertain CB Hounslow at home, on the back pitch, before the first game on the main pitch on Saturday 19 July, at home to South Park FC who have just been promoted to the Ryman League, having won the CCL last season.
One additional match has now been added to the schedule: Ashford will entertain Andover Town at Short Lane on Friday 25 July, kick-off 7.45 p.m. before sending a squad to Wraysbury FC the following day with a 3.00 p.m. kick-off.
Thanks to Simon Munns, Graham and Stuart Cooley and others, a huge amount of work has been going on at the ground in recent weeks and the new fencing, kindly supplied at very low cost by Messrs. Hitchcock and King, is now completed along the near touchline. The home dressing room is undergoing re-decoration whilst our friends from Lammas, who will be using the away dressing room as their home dressing room, are set to decorate it over the next week or so.
There is still quite a bit to do though and THE CLUB WISHES TO ORGANISE A WORKING PARTY ON TUESDAY AND THURSDAY NEXT WEEK. If you can spare an hour or two on either or both of those evenings, Simon will be at the ground from 5.00 p.m. We really do need any active bodied committee personnel along with supporters, etc. to turn up to help get the ground in pristine condition for the season.
The opening week’s league fixtures will be issued next week, whilst the full list will be publicised on 23 July. We do not have any of our County Cup draws yet but we will be at home in the FA Cup to Spartan S. Midlands side Berkhamsted FC over the weekend of 15-17 August. Lammas have also been drawn at home, to Bedfont Sports in an intriguing local derby and Football Secretary Geoff Knock will very shortly be sorting out who will play on which days over that weekend. It may be that Ashford will play on the Friday if Berkhamsted are agreeable, with Lammas playing on the Saturday. If Berkhamsted don’t wish to do that, Ashford will play on the Saturday, and Lammas and Bedfont can choose whether they wish to play on the Friday or the Sunday.
The new kit has been ordered and will hopefully be available for the first match on Saturday 2 August. It will bear the new JAS logo, with JAS having kindly sponsored this season’s kit. A new away strip is also being ordered.
Please note that membership is renewable by 31 July. Costs have not changed with the annual fee remaining at £25 (£15 for OAP’s). Entry to the ground for competitive matches will also remain unchanged at £8 for adults, with concessions for OAP’s (over 65) at £5 and for children under 16 and students (with proof) at just £1.
This season’s team photo will hopefully be taken on Friday 25 July prior to the Andover match, at 7.00 p.m. and committee personnel who would like to be in it are welcome to attend.
Finally it is hoped to appoint a new bar manager in the very near future and an announcement will be made over the next few days.