Ahead of the first-team’s must-win clash at Havant & Waterlooville, the Over 50s Walking Football squad secured some welcome silverware as they competed for the Kent League Plate last Sunday, writes Steve East.
Due to their respective league positions and a number of other teams declining to take on the mighty Fleet, the Plate final was a best-of-three-match series between Ebbsfleet Reds and Ebbsfleet Whites. After a heavy season, injuries had depleted both teams, but a squad of 13 took part from the two Fleet teams.
In an entertaining competition, the supporters of both teams saw some exciting football and the competitive nature of the games was enhanced, by what might be termed some erratic and at times eccentric officiating.
In Match 1 the Whites beat the Reds 4 -1 (Whites goals: Gazza Wilson, two from Paul Hook and Robin Counter; Reds: Dave Munn).
In Match 2 the Whites won 3-0, with Wilson and Hook both scoring again and another from Phil Garnham completing the victory. Thus Match 3 was not required and the Whites took the Plate.
The tournament was rounded off with the Reds playing a high scoring friendly against Maidstone. The Whites then played the Kent League Cup winners, Bexley (who had easily beaten former European Champions Herne Bay, in their final) and who featured among their very strong team former Fleet forward Andy Douglas. It was they who ran out winners by 3-0, although the Fleet were denied scoring by a superb display from the Bexley keeper.
So the first silverware for the Walking squad and signs of real promise going forward, with 20 players signed on who will spend the summer getting ready for a new campaign next season.