The cold end made a rare venture South of the River on Monday night to see Fisher FC take on top of the table and FA Cup Heroes Hythe Town in the Saftey Net Associates Kent Football League.
Third from bottom Fisher FC were formed in 2009 after the end of Fisher Athletic and have been ground sharing at Dulwich Hamlet's Champion Hill. Hythe Town are looking good for the league title with games in hand over their nearest challengers. It has sure been a season to remember for supporters of Scott Porter's team who were the first Kent League side since 1950 to reach the first round proper of the FA Cup where they lost after a memorable trip to League Two Hereford United. An incredible achievement for all at the club.
Fisher FC's tag line on their website is "A Bermondsey club, wholly owned and run by it's supporters" and their long term aim is to move back to a Community Stadium somewhere in the Rotherhithe and Bermondsey area. What is a shame is that the old Surrey Docks Stadium is derelict and vandalised after standing empty for a number of years . Pictures of the cold end's visit in September 2010 can be found HERE in the forgotten football article written at the time.
One hundred and five people gathered to watch the game in which, aside from the goal scored by Brendan Cass in the first few minutes, Fisher looked the better side for the opening twenty or so minutes without really troubling the away keeper Keiron Mann. Backed by plently of "COME ON FISH" shouts the home side tried their best against the league leaders. In particular for the Fish Dexter Babalola on the right hand side of midfield put in an impressive performance. He has quick feet, a good touch, showed lots of skill and made some strong forward runs deservedly netting the sponsor's man of the match award.
Gradually the visitors came into the game with centre back's Pat Kingwell and Dave Cook putting in sturdy performances. On the half hour Dan Teeley making only his second appearance for the Fish made a great save only to unluckily parry the ball into the path of Cass who slid the ball into the net to make it 2-0. Cass showed he has played at a higher level with his clinical finishing. The cold end remembers him scoring all those goals for Dartford FC in their Ryman North Championship campaign a few years back.
Hythe Town put in a professional performance in the second half and looked the more threatening in front of goal with Fisher passing the ball nicely and going forward well but never really having a decent
chance in front of goal thanks to the partnership of Kingwell and Cook.
The cold end says watch out for Hythe Town in the Ryman Division One (South) next season should they finish top and gain promotion.
With Fisher FC it's good to see the famous name hasn't been confined to the history books after the sad demise of Fisher Athletic in 2009. Here's hoping they return to their spiritual home in Bermondsey and Rotherhithe area sometime soon.
There is more Monday Night Football at Champion Hill next Monday when mid-table Tunbridge Wells visit. The Stadium is only a short walk from East Dulwich train station which is only a ten minute journey from London Bridge.
Landlords Dulwich Hamlet play Chipstead on Saturday and then entertain Leatherhead next Tuesday night in the Ryman Division One (South). Hamlet have an exciting young squad and run numerous youth sides in local leagues. They run two Under 18 sides of which one had an excellent run in the FA Youth Cup this season before putting up a very brave and impressive performance against the full-time Newcastle United youth/under 18 team who ran out 2-6 winners on a memorable night at Champion Hill.
Both clubs continue to work with the local community which is essentially what non-league football at this level should be all about.
FISHER FC WEBSITE
HYTHE TOWN WEBSITE
KENT FOOTBALL LEAGUE WEBSITE
Watch out for Fisher's (playing in black and white stripes) number seven who is the aforementioned Dexter Babalola