Cray’s penultimate pre-season game takes the Wands to their second straight local derby with a trip to Cray Valley Paper Mills on Wednesday, 3rd August. Kick off is 7.45pm
Pre-season has gone well for Cray so far, unbeaten after six games and in the last two games have really upped their game and look in fine fettle with the start of the new season ten days away.
The match against Leyton Orient last Tuesday was a great work out for the Wands and showed plenty of quality and resolve against good opponents to grab a draw after falling behind twice. This was followed at Glebe on Friday night with a tremendously professional performance which yielded a four nil win which didn’t flatter Cray at all despite six players being missing. Jay Leader notched his first goals for Cray as did Assistant Player Manager, Paul Lorraine. Karl Dent scored his third goal of pre-season and looks very sharp. Nick Blue has been outstanding in goal and defensively the team have been very solid indeed conceding just three goals. With Tony Russell having a good look at some trialists over the last three weeks, there have been some impressive displays and gives him some good options to look at as the Ryman South campaign gets closer and closer.
Certainly Cray Valley will provide very decent opposition on Wednesday and are an established Southern Counties East League side. Paul Gross’s team finished in a highly respectable 10th place last season. Pre-season has gone well for them so far and were unbeaten in their first four games before losing at home to Meridian VP on Saturday. There may well be a familiar face in the Cray Valley team tomorrow as Leigh Bremner has been playing with the Millers in pre-season and if picked is bound to give 100% as usual. The two teams played almost a year ago in a friendly at Cray Valley and the Wands came from two nil down to win 3-2 with Brems scoring the winner in the last minute.
After this game the Wands have one more game to go up at Lowestoft Town on Saturday which will see the team fully tuned against a side higher up the league pyramid.
DIRECTIONS TO CRAY VALLEY PM
DGS Marine Stadium
Middle Park Avenue
Eltham, SE9 5HT
Since we last played at the Badgers Sports Ground, the stadium has had a complete makeover and the Millers are now tenants there with Greenwich Borough now the landlords. The stadium is now known officially as the DGS Marine Stadium.
The ground is really easy to find if you are coming by car. It is located just off the South Circular A205 at the Yorkshire Grey roundabout. If you are coming from the A2 (either north or south), head onto the South Circular s/p Catford. At the roundabout take the second exit into Middle Park Avenue. The entrance to the ground is on your right hand side.
If you are coming up the A20 then when you reach the Cliftons Roundabout (junction with A205 South Circular) go all the way around the roundabout and head back onto the A20 then turn left immediately before Goals 5-a-side centre into Eltham Palace Road. At the end turn left at the roundabout and the entrance to the ground is on your left hand side. There is ample free parking at the ground.
The nearest train station is Mottingham. You can catch the 160 bus to the ground or walk – it is about 15 minutes away. Exit the station (from London turn left, from Sidcup/Darftord cross bridge then turn left) into Middle Park Avenue and follow this for about a mile. The ground is at the end of this road on your left hand side. Eltham Station is also fairly close but no bus will take you there from the station so otherwise it is around a fifteen minute walk up to the high street and then at the church cross over the zebra crossing and go down Eltham Hill which can test the legs at a fast past. Once you get to the Yorkshire Grey roundabout (there is a McDonalds there) take the second exit into Middle Park Avenue and it is a two minute walk up that road.
If time on your hands then Eltham Palace is well worth a look. A National Heritage site the former royal residence was once the home for Henry VIII when he was Prince Henry. It has been unoccupied for many years but attracts many visitors and has great gardens. Greenwich of course is also close enough for a day out either Maritime or to the North by the O2 . I would suggest some sights to see in Mottingham but can’t immediately think of any.