Following Saturday’s postponement of the original tie Moneyfields and Cray Wanderers meet for the first time in the 2nd Qualifying Round of the Buildbase FA Trophy on Tuesday night. 7.45pm. If the game is level after 90 minutes the match will go to a replay at Hayes Lane next Wednesday. The winners of the tie face a tough trip to Braintree Town in the 3rd Qualifying Round.
This is the third season in the last four in which Cray have reached this round and both sides come into the game in very good form. Cray are unbeaten in 13 games having played their last four league matches away from home picking up 8 points in the process. MOneyfields who are in their first ever season in the Evo-Stik Southern League East Division are top of the table and are unbeaten after 13 league games.
The Wands reached the 2nd Qualifying Round after beating Horsham 8-0 at Hayes Lane in the Preliminary Round and then defeated Grays Athletic 2-0 in a replay at Parkside.
The unbeaten run continued at a rather soggy Hastings United last Tuesday and the point kept Cray in a very healthy fourth place but boss Tony Russell is keen to turn some of those draws into wins. The form of Michael Power continues to be sharp and his stunning volley at Pilot Field was his 15th goal of the season. Defensively after a shaky start on Tuesday the team reverted back to their mean ways and Nick Blue didn’t have much to do in goal. However as Tony admitted and has done on a number of occasions the team just need to show a bit more accuracy in the final third when the Wands have been on top of games but certainly the Hastings keeper kept them in the game with a number of key saves.
The fact remains that after 16 games Cray are in a very healthy league position although maybe best to judge the league table more after Christmas/New Year before you get totally carried away.
Our opponents and hosts Moneyfields FC are an upwardly mobile club and were promoted from the Wessex league last season and began life in the Southern League East Division for the first time. Dave Carter’s si0de have got off to a great start to the season and are top of the division with 31 points (the same amount as Cray) and have a four point lead at the top from Cambridge City.
They reached this round for the first time in their history by beating Bideford 4-2 at home in the Preliminary Round and then won 1-0 at Yate Town in the next round.
Their form at home is particularly impressive and they have won their six home games beating Kempson Rovers, Marlow, Barton, Chalfont St Peter, Aylesbury and Egham all fairly impressively. Away from home they won at Fleet, Thame Utd and Arlesey and picked up good points at Northwood, Hayes & Yeading, AFC Dunstable and at Rushden & Diamonds last Saturday when they levelled in injury time to draw 2-2. Leading scorer is Ryan Pennery with 10 goals.
Their only defeats have come in cup competitions. In the FA Cup they defeated Badshot Lea (who Cray beat last season) 3-0 away before losing 1-2 at Cinderford in the 1st Qualifying Round. They did lose their last match in the Southern League Cup on Tuesday losing 1-4 to Basingstoke Town.
This promises to be as tough a challenge of any Cray have faced this season and this should be a rousing and passionate cup tie.
DIRECTIONS TO MONEYFIELDS FC
Moneyfields Sports Ground
Portsmouth PO3 6LA
Admission Prices – £8.00 adults – £4.00 concessions
Please note that the club coach will be leaving the Dartford Harvester at 3.30pm for the trip to Moneyfields. On what will be a chilly evening it might be warmer to hop on the coach to the game.
From Bromley/Crays hit the M25, go for 18.5 miles then at Junction 10, take the A3 exit to London S/W Guildford. After 0.3 miles at roundabout take the 1st exit onto A3 slip road to Portsmouth/Guildford/Effington for 0.4 miles. Keep right and merge onto Portsmouth Road/A3. Continue on A3 for 28.9 miles that at roundabout take 2nd exit onto Liphook-Peterfield bypass/A3. Follow for 11.2 miles then keep right to continue on A3 (M), follow signs to Porstmouth/Hayling Island for 6 miles then use left lane to merge onto Havant Bypass A27. Follow for 0.7 miles then take the A2030 exit towards Portsmouth E/Central Southsea. After 0.4 miles at roundabout take 2nd exit onto Eastern Road/A2030 and turn right into Tangier Road then turn right onto Stanley Road. After 0.3 miles continue onto Cobden Avenue then turn right onto Chesterfield Road, then a right onto Paignton Avenue and after 0.1 mile turn left onto Moneyfields Avenue and the ground will be on the right.
If you are going by train then probably Fratton is the most convenient station for a midweek game. Trains to Fratton from London Waterloo are regular throughout the day and run five times an hour with probably the 17.00 being the best bet as it gets to Fratton at 18.28 and leaves you a bit of time to get to the ground. There is a taxi rank outside Fratton station which will prevent you a longish walk and maybe better to book one for the return. Please note the last train back to Waterloo is at 22:28 and takes two hours to get to Waterloo arriving at 00:31. The last train back to Orpington from Waterloo East is at 00:53.
It is about 1.7 miles to the ground from the station. To walk it, the quickest route is to leave station onto Claremont Road then turn right onto Walmer Road. After 0.3 miles continue onto Byerly Road then right onto Clive Road then left onto Clarkes Road. Then turn right onto St. Mary’s Road for 0.2 miles then a slight left to stay on St. Marys Road.
At the roundabout take 2nd exit onto Baffins Road/A288 for 0.4 miles then turn right onto Milton Road/A288 then continue onto Dover Road and after 0.3 miles turn right onto Moneyfields Avenue.
Hilsea station is technically the nearest about 1.5 miles away and there are usually three direct trains from London Waterloo at 09, 15 and 45 minutes past the hour. The last train back to London Waterloo is at 22:32 and arrives at Waterloo at 00:31. There doesn’t seem to be a taxi rank at Hilsea station however.
From Hilsea you can get the no 21 bus from Norway Road about a seven minute walk from the station which run fairly regularly up to 6pm when they become two an hour which will take you to Chichester Road and from there about a four minute walk to Moneyfields Avenue. For the journey back they run hourly, it might be better to go via Fratton. To walk it go from Airport Service Road, onto Quatremaine Road, onto Dundas Lane going over one roundabout for 0.2 miles and then at the roundabout take the 3rd exit onto Moneyfields Avenue.