Bognor need to take winning home form on the road

Coach Robbie Blake revelled in Bognor’s best win of the season so far – and challenged them to take their winning home form on the road.

Bognor players celebrate with Ashton Leigh, who downed East Thurrock with a hat-trick / Picture: Lyn Phillips
Bognor players celebrate with Ashton Leigh, who downed East Thurrock with a hat-trick / Picture: Lyn Phillips

A hat-trick by Ashton Leigh and a goal by his brother Tommy secured a comfortable 4-0 win over East Thurrock at Nyewood Lane.

It followed a good win over Carshalton in the Rocks’ only other home game this season, against Carshalton, and was in stark contrast to some of their performances on the road, most notably the defeats at Hayes and Cheshunt.

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Blake said of Saturday’s win: “We asked the players to respond after the Cheshunt defeat and they did.

“The play and the tempo was fantastic but it’s just a start.

“We’re okay on a good, big pitch but it’s the other side of the game, when we go away, that we need to work on.”

Blake said hat-trick hero Leigh was outstanding and his all-round play was the main reason they were three up by half-time.

He said the Leigh brothers were examples of the type of players the club needed to attract.

“We’re striving all the time to get good local players in. Geographically we need to get players from around the local area.

“Ashton and Tommy are still learning and getting better.”

Margate visit Nyewood Lane on Saturday and Blake said: “It’s great playing at the Lane.

“The ground’s in such great nick and the pitch is great.

“Teams will like coming to us because of the surface but we have to make it a fortress where teams go away saying ‘they don’t half play well’.”

Bognor have been handed a repeat of the 2019 Sussex Senior Cup final in the second round of this year’s competition.

The Rocks – who still hold the cup after last year’s competition failed to reach its conclusion because of the lockdown – will host Burgess Hill, who they beat in extra-time at the Amex nearly 18 months ago.

The tie is likely to be played at Nyewood Lane on Tuesday, November 3.

In the FA Trophy, a contest in which the Rocks went all the way to the semi-finals five seasons ago, Bognor will host Tooting and Mitcham of the Isthmian south central division on Saturday week.