Tense excitement ahead in battle for premier survival

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A victory-filled weekend has given Eastbourne Men’s 1s a fighting chance of avoiding relegation ahead of the final crunch game of the season this Saturday.

Eastbourne’s double scalp of Sevenoaks and Milton Keynes have left them just one point behind the latter team and one point from safety.

However, they still only remain three points above bottom-placed Banbury, who have a superior goal difference.

It means that the season will now culminate in a flurry of tense excitement as all three teams go into this weekend fighting for their Premier Division survival.

Eastbourne manager David Adelston said, “It’s all on this weekend. We have to hope Milton Keynes slip up.”

Eastbourne travel away to Chichester Priory Park Men’s 1s on the back of two matches unbeaten. On Saturday, a single Mike Deller-Merricks goal was enough to see off Sevenoaks, while Eastbourne recorded a comfortable 5-1 victory over Milton Keynes on Sunday.

Goals from Alex Barnes, James Van Der Reisen, Jamie Hayes and a double from Stephen Perry sealed the win to ensure Eastbourne still have a chance of staying up ahead of this weekend.

Adelston said, “This weekend was exactly what was needed. Saturday was the tougher game, and by Sunday the guys had got a lot more confident.”

Having won more matches in the past month than they have done all season, Eastbourne can at least say they went down fighting if results don’t end up going their way this weekend.

“We have to fight, we have to try our best.

“Chichester away will be a very tough ask, but anything’s possible.”

Eastbourne’s relegation rivals also face tough games this weekend as Banbury face second-placed London Wayfarers and Staines await Milton Keynes.

The Ladies 1s also had a very successful weekend, with a 3-1 win over Lewes Ladies 2s on Saturday and a 5-1 victory over Winchester Ladies 1s on Sunday. They face a semi-final Vase Cup clash with Worthing Ladies 1s this weekend.

Elsewhere, the Men’s 2s, 3s and 4s all recorded emphatic victories, winning 6-0, 5-1 and 6-2 respectively.