Garstang’s title bid goes down to the final game

Garstang were easy winners against Slyne with Hest last Saturday
Garstang were easy winners against Slyne with Hest last Saturday
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Garstang boss Lee Baker wants his players to embrace the challenge now they are back in pole position for the West Lancashire League Premier Division title.

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With one game to go, the Riversiders are top of the table, a point ahead of Blackpool Wren Rovers ahead of their final game at Tempest United next Monday.

That was a match which could have been academic with Wrens knowing that wins against Euxton Villa on Monday and Longridge Town on Saturday would have given them the trophy.

However, they could only draw 2-2 at Euxton on Monday, handing the initiative back to the Riversiders.

Depending on Wrens’ result against Longridge this weekend, Baker’s players may need to win or draw at Tempest – or they may have already claimed the title if Longridge pick up three points.

“Tempest are a difficult side to play on their own patch,” Baker said.

“It’s tight and compact so I can see them being a very awkward side to play against and we’ll have to be patient.

“It was our aim to win our games and force it into the final match, which the lads have done.”

Garstang have already beaten Tempest twice this season, winning 4-1 in January’s league meeting and 3-2 in last month’s Richardson Cup semi-final before going on to beat Euxton in the final.

Defeat against Fulwood Amateurs in the Lancashire Shield final ended Garstang’s hopes of the treble but the manager has been impressed by his squad’s powers of recovery since then.

They have won their subsequent three games against Longridge, Vickerstown and Slyne with Hest, scoring 14 goals in the process.

“I thanked the lads after the game with Slyne on Saturday,” Baker said.

“I said that, after the final, they could have made excuses and said they were tired but not one of them has done that.”