Eastbourne Borough put seven past Bexhill - boss Bloor gives pre-season verdict

Eastbourne Borough’s pre-season planning took another step forward on Saturday with a comfortable 7-1 win – and some eye-catching forward play – against Bexhill United.

Aerial action between Eastbourne Borough and Bexhill United / Picture: Lydia Redman
Aerial action between Eastbourne Borough and Bexhill United / Picture: Lydia Redman

For players and coaches, it was about full-match practice. For spectators, it was probably more about putting faces to names, as a number of summer signings slotted into the Borough line-up. And a couple of those new arrivals really caught the eye. Shiloh Remy’s lightning pace on the right wing was matched by his quick thinking: the young recruit from QPR looks a player who can set the National South alight.

On the opposite flank, locally based Leone Gravata was just as lively and incisive, while second-half sub Milly Scarlett revelled in the role of a creative attacking full-back. Alex Wynter and Mitch Dickenson commanded the back line – and Dickenson also found time to plant a commanding header past his own keeper for Bexhill’s goal. No worries, Mitch: we know you only do that in friendlies…

On a baking afternoon the Sports opened at blistering pace and they were 5-0 up by mid-way through the first half. Greg Luer’s header sweetly converted Remy’s perfect cross on four minutes, and he doubled his own tally from close range after a magical one-two with Charlie Walker. Walker was also twice the provider for a pair of brilliant Gravata strikes, and a Town own goal added to the goal cascade.

The second half proved not quite so breathless. Remy claimed a goal of his own, cutting in from a narrow angle, and Jaden Perez rounded off the 7-1 late in the game.

The manager was all smiles. “In the first half especially, we played really well. I thought some of the attacking movement was exceptionally good, particularly from Leone Gravata and Shiloh Remy. In the second half we were delighted to introduce some of our young local players, including Callum Pollitt who is only 16, together with Haydn Beaconsfield and Shay Hollobone, who are training with the first team.

“In terms of our close-season preparation, we’re at least two thirds of the way there. We’ll spend the final two weeks working on patterns of play, set pieces, and so on. We are certainly moving in a direction we’re all happy with.”

Borough’s devastating finishing may have been more than Bexhill could handle, but the Step Five club actually kept the game very competitive. “The score was not really so relevant. I want to thank our good friend Ryan Light and his side for giving us an excellent game. Credit to them and we are wishing them well in their own league campaign.”

Bexhill will be guests at the Lane for the early weeks of the Southern Combination season. Their own home ground is not available until the end of the cricket season, and Borough have readily agreed to accommodate their opening fixtures.