Dave Hancock takes over the captaincy of Bracknell Town for two games – and could be leading them to league and cup glory.
With Carl Davies and Jamie McClurg both suspended, the experienced defender will be given the extra responsibility for two of the club’s biggest games of the season. The Robins complete their Uhlsport Hellenic League fixtures against Highworth at Larges Lane on Saturday (3pm) knowing that, apart from a freak result in the Henley versus Thame game, they will be crowned champions.
Then on Tuesday (7.30pm ko) they take on Binfield in the Berks & Bucks Senior Trophy final at Windsor FC.
“They are two massive games for us,” said right-back Hancock.
Town looked to have blown their title chances when crashing 4-1 at Ardley two weeks ago, but returned to the top of the table last Saturday when they won 2-1 at Brimscombe & Thrupp while Thame were held to a 2-2 draw by Lydney. It means both sides are locked together on 81 points, but Town have a superior goal difference of seven. Thame will be buoyed by last week’s result which saw bottom-club Henley ship nine goals at Binfield, but they will find them tougher opposition on their own patch at The Triangle. And with every goal Bracknell score, Thame’s task will become even more difficult. Town should be capable of netting against Highworth with TJ Bohane and Adam Cornell having scored 85 goals between them this season. Swindon-based Bohane, who netted the winner at Brimscombe, enjoyed several successful seasons at Highworth and remains friends with several of their players.
Hancock admitted it was “tough going” against Brismscombe, adding: “The pitch wasn’t the best and it took us a while to adapt. It was cutting up and heavy on the legs. It was a good team performance, but we had to win ugly, basically.”
Former Ascot United captain Hancock is also looking forward to next Tuesday, He continued: “I can’t wait, it’s always nice to play a final. This will be the first Berks & Bucks final I’ve played in – and even better it’s a local derby. It will be the fifth time we have played Binfield this season and it should be another good game. Hopefully, we will go into the final as league champions.”
Town boast a 100-per-cent record against the Moles, having beaten them twice in the league whilst knocking them out of the FA Vase and the Bluefin Sport Hellenic League Cup. Kensley Maloney, who missed the game at Brimscombe due to injury, returns to the side against Highworth, while Dan Roberts and Damien Smith (if fit) are both added to last Saturday’s team. Binfield, who included four under-18 players in their 13-man squad that hammered Henley 9-0, are likely to field a young side again with players out injured or cup tied.