Hillians Hold Northampton In Pre-Season Friendly At The Green Elephants Stadium
12th July 2015
League Two side Northampton Town were held to a stalemate with Burgess Hill Town FC on a simply wonderful sunny afternoon at the Green Elephants Stadium.
There was very much a 'back to school' vibe as the Hillians played their first home game since they were presented with the Ryman League One South trophy back in April.
Arriving at the ground, the first big noticable change was the clubhouse. Gone was the dark wood cladding, replaced by a blue/grey tone plastic cladding installed by Keymer Double Glazing.
There's also a new fixtures board, sponsored by Brewers.
The new look Hillians' matchday programme was packed full of information with updates from manager Ian Chapman and Chairman Kevin Newell.
Sadly it was revealed that defender Neil Watts will miss the season due to injury. Spencer Slaughter has departed the club for Haywards Heath Town FC and due to other commitments, Rob O'Toole won't be returning this season.
Chappers' aim for the season is hit the 55 point mark as soon as possible and for the Hillians to find themselves still in the Ryman Premier league come the end of April.
Chairman Keven Newell touched on some of the work done at the club during the summer with the aim of presenting Burgess Hill Town FC in the best possible light as they begin life at a higher level.
There was also some information on the Hillians' four new signings this season -
Tommy Fraser, Josh Jones, Phil Johnson and Chris Smith.
As for the game....
To be honest, it mostly passed your reporter by. With the excitement of the new season, there were so many people to catch up with, chatting about the signings, departures, changes at the ground and news from other clubs.
This fixture was always going to be tough against the professional side with the Hillians on the backfoot for large periods of the contest. Northampton had their chances with goalkeepers Josh James and Josh Green both denying the visiting side on a number of occasions.
Ian Chapman and his staff will look upon it as a good outing for the squad, getting minutes into their legs and adapting to not having the lion's share of posession of which they enjoyed numerous times last term. The clean sheet is always a bonus.
The sponsor's man of the match was defender Toby Pointing who lined up at centreback for this game.
You can find a full match report on the BHTFC website here:
The Hillian's next pre-season friendly is at the Green Elephants Stadium on Wednesday July 15th where they'll once again entertain league two opposition, this time it's local rivals Crawley Town F.C. It's a game we'll be keeping a much closer eye on with local bragging rights at stake!
Kick-off is at 7:30pm. Entry is £6 for adults, £4 for O.A.Ps with under 18's getting in for free.
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Were you at the Northampton game? What did you think? Will you be along on Wednesday to see the Hillians battle Crawley Town?