Bergholt boss hoping for right to play

EAST Bergholt manager Karl Vernau can't wait for tomorrow's Suffolk Senior Cup second round home clash against neighbours Brantham Athletic (kick-off 1.

Elvin King

EAST Bergholt manager Karl Vernau can't wait for tomorrow's Suffolk Senior Cup second round home clash against neighbours Brantham Athletic (kick-off 1.30pm).

“They don't come much bigger than this,” he said. “It will be intense, but I don't want it to be a kicking match.

“Suffolk FA have written us off on their website, but we feel we have a chance if we earn the right to play and compete with our opponents.”

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Bergholt are in the lower reaches of the Metaltec SIL Senior Division while Brantham are highly-placed in the First Division of the Ridgeons League, having won the SIL title last season.

To add extra spice to what has always been keen rivalry, Brantham now have three officials who were previously connected with Bergholt.

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Manager Tony Hall led Bergholt to the last of their three consecutive SIL titles from 2004 to 2006, while Brantham coach Paul Skingley is another former successful Bergholt boss. And Colin Grogan, who is part of the Brantham managerial team, is another ex-Bergholt man.

Vernau was assistant to Glynn Hague for a year until September when their roles became reversed. Prior to that Vernau took five years out of the game after playing with distinction for a number of local clubs.

The son of former BT Trimley and Stutton manager Barry, Vernau explained: “I was playing golf on Saturday afternoons.

“One weekend I had time on my hands and watched a home Bergholt game. I found myself shouting instructions and was later introduced to Glynn, and I agreed to link with him.

“Glynn is still a vital member of the club, and I would not have taken the job without him as coach.”

Vernau says there is a buzz around Bergholt again, and that they have nothing to fear tomorrow.

“The expectations of SIL clubs doing well in the Senior Cup lessen each year against sides from the Ridgeons League,” he added.

“So all the pressure will be on Brantham, and we aren't in fear of them.

“We are stronger than we were 12 months ago as a team and as a club, and there is competition for places again.

“I have every player available, and we are a solid defensive unit so will be looking to provide an upset.”

There are two other Ridgeons League versus SIL encounters with Cornard playing Capel Plough and Leiston St Margarets at home to Louis Newman's Stowmarket Town.

Holders, and finalists for the last two seasons, Grundisburgh will not find life easy against Simon Fryatt's Melton St Audry's, while Ransomes and Westerfield have journeys to the unknown with trips to Corton and Beccles respectively.

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