There can be only one place to start our round-up of Sussex League division-two and three action – with Bosham, who marked their return to the county league with a thrashing of hosts Ferring.
Midhurst and Sidlesham’s reports are also included here.
Ferring 0 Bosham 8
Sussex League division three
Bosham made their anticipated return to Sussex League action – and did so in some style with a comprehensive rout of luckless Ferring at Glebelands
Only three minutes in, the Robins were in front thanks to the formidable striking prowess of Marco Giambelardini. His low shot from the edge of the box should have been saved by keeper Artur Grodzichi, but the ball edged underneath his body and squirmed in.
Bosham kept a very strong tempo more goals were inevitable.
Dave Storey grabbed a treble along with Kieran Hartley while fellow midfielder Kieran Carter added the other as Bosham ran riot over their steadily beleaguered opponents.
Hartley extended the lead after 23 minutes from the penalty spot following a clear infringement against Graeme Dowden as he surged into the area.
Storey got in on the act to almost end the game as a contest. Dowden launched a ball over the top and Grodzichi completely misjudged the bounce and watched helplessly as the ball sailed over his head, Storey poking the ball into the empty net.
In the final quarter-hour Bosham hit the Ferring net a further five times.
The visitors’ superior fitness told as they surged forward, Storey bagging his second from yards out. Adam Brett outpaced the right-back and laid the ball on a plate for Storey to sidefoot home.
Hartley joined him on a double, slamming home to make it five.
A few minutes later Storey burst through the largel- ineffective defence and slotted in easily to register his third.
Young Carter got in on the act – finishing well thanks to excellent strength and vision from substitute Ryan Lancaster.
In the last minute of normal time, Hartley sealed his treble for the match with a firm shot with the Blues’ back-line breached yet again.
It was an excellent start for manager Andy Probee and his troops, who welcome Clymping to Walton Lane on Saturday (Aug 30) for the first home fixture of the season (3pm).
At 1pm, former Pompey goalkeeper Alan Knight will re-open Bosham’s refurbished clubhouse – thanks to Sport England Inspired Facilities funding.
The club are opening their doors to the community and hope local people will check out the improvements made.
BOSHAM: Joyce, Probee, Dowden, Docherty, Blanshard, Carter, Hartley, Wilson, Storey, Giambelardini, Brett. Subs: Lancaster, Desi, Boutwood.
Saltdean 2 Midhurst 2
Sussex League division two
AFTER two close losses in their opening league and cup games, Midhurst registered their first point at Saltdean – but felt it could have been three.
Manager Gary Norgate had seven of the first-team squad missing but still fielded a strong team.
The Stags started the brighter of the two teams and man of the match Loz Hyde burst through from midfield on ten minutes to prod home from 12 yards.
Chances flowed for the Stags with Liam Dreckman having a number of opportunities to add to the score. Matt Mason was dangerous down the left.
Against the run of play, Saltdean broke and only a good save by Ian Knight made sure they did not draw level.
The Stags’ second came when a long punt by Knight found Dreckman, who squared to Mason. He curled the ball home from 15 yards with the outside of his boot.
Approaching half-time, a mistake in midfield allowed a Saltdean player to burst through and, following a clash with Knight, a penalty was awarded. Marc Whiteman stroked it home.
The Stags came out for the second half looking lethargic and Saltdean piled on the pressure. Following a couple of near misses, a cross saw the ball take an unfortunate bobble over Sean Dummer’s foot, leaving Harry Coker to equalise.
The game opened up and there were chances for both teams. Dreckman and Lyons could have netted for the Stags while Saltdean hit the bar with a header.
The last opportunity fell to young Callum Dowdell, who lashed over on the half-volley from ten yards.
Boss Norgate said: “We started really well and did the things Andy and I asked the lads to do. At 2-0 we looked comfortable and should probably have scored a couple more.
“As in our other games, we switched off for a couple of periods, which ended up costing us. We have to cut out the mistakes and do the right things more of the time.”
MIDHURST: I Knight, Knight (J Stevens), Dummer, Norgate, Hill, Hyde, Sheehan (Dowdell), Stevens, Lyons, Dreckman, Mason. Sub not used: Newton.
Sidlesham 1 Burgess Hill & Hurstpierpoint 0
Sussex League division three
Sidlesham enjoyed a winning start after a busy close season, with ground upgrades being completed.
The Sids had a good pre season and went into the game full of confidence although with caution as they were defeated by Hurstpierpoint in the last game of last season.
Sids started well and their back five looked as solid as ever until a fantastic turn and shot on the corner of the box had Lee Arnell at full stretch.
The second half saw Sidlesham much more fluent and more of a threat in the final third.
Tom Bayley began to attack his full back and put fantastic balls across the box.
Centre-half Barry McCoy was closest to the opener from a free-kick driven hard and low with the keeper opting to use an outstretched leg after being wrongfooted.
Joe Jefkins was replaced by Dean Reed on the left wing and Reed began to cause problems for the tiring right-back.
Paul Barnes was replaced by Greg Robinson and a reshuffle saw Reed go up front alongside Dan Bassil.
Robinson’s first touch was an inswinging cross from the right and was kept alive well by centre-half Joe Leggett and finished neatly by striker Bassil.
A couple more chances arose for the home side but tired legs and good saves kept it at 1-0.
Sidlesham host Ifield on Saturday.