SIL sides looking for higher-level scalps in Suffolk Senior Cup
The two top-placed teams in the Touchline SIL Senior Division are eager to secure Thurlow Nunn First Division scalps this afternoon.
While Senior leaders Crane Sports take on Woodbridge Town (kick-off 2.15pm) at home in the quarter-finals of the Suffolk Senior Cup, second-placed Felixstowe Harpers visit Debenham LC (kick-off 3pm).
Respective managers Iain Radnor (Crane Sports) and Ian Watson (Felixstowe Harpers) are looking forward to pitting their wits against opposition, who play in one league higher than the Step 7 pair.
Radnor, whose side have won 16 straight league games, and only need six more points to claim their first SIL championship in 40 years, said: “For me, Woodbridge go into the game as favourites.
“As I understand it, they’re in a period of transition, but we’ve had them watched two or three times and they look like they’ve come through that.
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“They got a great result last Saturday (a 1-1 draw with league-leaders Saffron Walden) and play in the league above us.
“We’ll be ready though, and actually, it’s a game I’m looking really forward to as we can possibly relax and enjoy the game.
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“Being at the top of the table, the pressure is always on us, but that won’t be the case this weekend and hopefully we can play with freedom.”
Cranes are enjoying a fantastic season and look well on course to end their wait for the Senior League trophy, but Radnor isn’t counting his chickens just yet.
“There’s still work to be done,” he said.
“It’s ours to lose and only six points will do it, but we’re not over the line yet.
“If I’m honest, I didn’t expect us to do as well as we have, but the whole squad have been phenomenal.
“We have the right types of players on the pitch and the right types of players off the pitch, the changing room is tip-top.”
Someone also hoping to upset higher-ranked opposition is Harpers boss Ian Watson, who firmly believes the Senior Division is as good as the Thurlow Nunn second tier.
“It’s always nice to be drawn against a team in the league above,” Watson said.
“It gives you a chance to prove yourself, and is different from playing the same SIL sides every week.
“I think the top four or five SIL teams could easily compete, and even challenge, in the First Division.
“The SIL has some quality players in it, and a lot could actually play higher.”
Harpers themselves brought in several Thurlow Nunn Premier Division faces in the summer, and after a period of settling down, have turned the corner in recent months.
The other two Senior Cup quarter-finals this afternoon (kick-offs 2.15pm) see Achilles take on Ipswich Valley Rangers, and Lakenheath host Beccles.