'The Lane' sports get fully behind GFC ground plans

THE plans may not be exciting enough to get GFC on Kevin McCloud’s Grand Designs series on Channel Four but, fingers crossed, they will be enough to secure the Green Lions a short and perhaps even mid-term future at Footes Lane.

THE plans may not be exciting enough to get GFC on Kevin McCloud’s Grand Designs series on Channel Four but, fingers crossed, they will be enough to secure the Green Lions a short and perhaps even mid-term future at Footes Lane.

Inside Track has learnt that, with all users of Footes Lane keen and totally committed to keeping Tony Vance’s men at ‘The Lane’, design plans have been submitted to Environment Department planners for a black-painted, wooden boundary fence around the ground.

It is understood that rugby, hockey and athletics have no issues with the proposed development which is being forced on GFC by the Football Association.

Culture and Leisure also back the plans and there is now real hope that the community club will beat the 31 March deadline imposed by the FA to have the work completed.

Some canny additions of evergreen hedging will minimise the impact of a fixed barrier circling the entire ground perimeter, and the club will bear the full cost of all the new requirements.

That fact in itself highlights the advances of the GFC project in such a short time, and their highly professional business plans at the tip of the local football pyramid.

Just off the top of that pyramid Bels and North clash in the FNB Priaulx League today and it would be good to think that a large portion of the GFC patronage will head down to the Track.

It promises to be a decent contest, especially with Craig Young and Dave Rihoy missing from the equation.

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NOBODY has been saying too much, but there is something big afoot in football planning.

Yet this column regards the appointment of Steve Sharman and Angus Mackay to the GFA Board as a very significant step forward in the overall player development pathway, one which has the potential to make as big an impact on the game as the introduction of GFC.

Now, in my book, that is something hugely exciting and if – as I suspect – it will help end factionalism in the island’s biggest winter sport, then wonderful.

‘It is not about separate entitities in the game,’ said Sharman yesterday as he snatched a moment to speak to Inside Track while waiting for his plane at Gatwick.

‘It is not just about a pathway to professionalism and into English football, it is about a pathway into the GFA clubs, to GFC, to university,’ he added.

His hope is that the GFA will soon be able to mirror the committed Sports Commission objective to making living on the island an advantage to developing youngsters and the elite, and no longer a disadvantage.

Although initially aimed at the 12 to 16 age-group, the sights are being set far higher, as Sharman

hinted when he said: ‘The next age-group [16 to 18] will be the aspiration that in the not-too-distant future six players from North won’t go off to the UK and take £80,000 off island when what they want

to gain from football can be achieved here.’

Wow, I’d say.

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SELDOM have I seen one player through sheer force of personality and her own skill, have such a sudden and dramatic and dominating affect on a key game as Verona Tomlin produced to drive Resolution IT onto a remarkable win over the ‘unbeatable’ Nerine in netball’s top flight this week.

Tomlin was magnificent as she arrived late from a basketball commitment and, with her spring-heeled jumping under the post, destroyed the Nerine defence.

It was exhilarating stuff to watch unless, of course, you were part of the Nerine camp (who have not lost in nine years) and were defenders Anais de Carteret and Lorna Hall.

If it is true Tomlin, who recently returned to the island to teach at Les Beaucamps High, does not plan to take the sport seriously enough to be involved with the island sides, I seriously hope someone in authority has a quiet word and pleads with this impressively agile player to reconsider. As the old poster said: ‘Your Country Needs You’.

Tomlin has the toughness of mind and body to ruffle a few Jersey feathers, just as she did the Nerine ones.

Tuesday’s result is just what the sport needed, although Nerine might not view things that way.

With Resolution on the up and the men’s side Lookinforasponsor showing they are more than a match for any of the top teams, perhaps Division One will go up a notch in terms of standard this winter. As we all know, it needed to. Those Jets in Jersey are flying and we need their wings clipped.

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LONDON House Dogs FC cemented their place at the helm of the Sunday Soccer League with an emphatic 14-0 victory over Waitrose at Les Varendes on Remembrance Sunday.

But for the heroics of Waitrose’s new goalkeeper Andy Makins and some wayward finishing from the defending champions, the margin of victory would have been much higher.

Briefly, some feared that the record Sunday League defeat when Monty’s lost 40-1 could be under threat, but to their credit the new league team never gave up and battled valiantly to the end.

Although the score was only 4-0 at the break, the floodgates opened as Waitrose tired late on.

Maxi Roussel notched four, skipper for the day Richard McKenzie and substitute Craig Dodd both grabbed hat-tricks, with Damian Le Tocq twice and Steve Le Lerre and Neil Ogier also on the scoresheet.

The two teams face each other again at midday this Sunday and LHD could pile on more misery when prolific striker Todd Ogier, captain Stuart Guilmoto and defender Matt Jennings return to the fray.

New boys BW Builders showed more promise and that they are well capable of enjoying a fine debut season with a 3-1 win against Kleinwort Benson.

Jamie Gauvain scored the first after 20 minutes from just inside the penalty area after Jamie Bentley’s lobbed pass set him up.

Impressive former Bristol City FC youth player Stephan Taylor doubled the lead about 10 minutes later after latching on to Chris Tostevin’s through ball and firing home from 12 yards.

A great turn and shot from 20 yards by Bentley made it 3-0 before Greg McKenzie notched a consolation for KB with five minutes remaining.

Last season’s league and cup runners-up, Martin and Martin, only had 10-men, but emerged victorious 5-2 against a spirited Deloitte side.

A solid and determined performance started badly, though, as a finely struck shot by Andy Marston gave Deloitte the lead – his eighth league goal of the season.

Mat Chesters equalised but Alex Wilson restored the lead before Chesters struck again.

In the second-half two goals in two minutes proved decisive, as firstly Ross Elliott then the excellent midfielder Brandon Harrison made it 4-2 with a curling 18-yard effort.

Last season’s golden boot winner Shannon Goode got in on the act late on.