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Tuesday 29th April 2014 ko 18.30

Banbury District & Lord Jersey League Division One

HORNTON 4 (Walton 25 Bedding 27 81 Lee 82)

BLOXHAM 3 (Toule 17 R Gregg 12 35)

Att 11

Entry FREE

No Programme

As a groundhopper it sometimes pays dividends to step out of your comfort zone, and look out a game that chances are you’d never go and see on a Saturday. Early evening kick-offs do mean you get home at a sensible hour too! Hornton is one of those pretty-as-a picture villages in the very northernmost fields of northern Oxfordshire, and in truth you do hardly notice the border in these agricultural lands.

Even now the village shows signs of the area’s turbulent past. During the English civil war Banbury, just 5 miles away was a Puritan stronghold, but Oxford a Cavalier city, Banbury United’s nickname is still the Puritans, and I remember their programme featuring a cartoon of the legend of the locals hanging a cat on a Monday for the killing of a mouse on a Sunday. There’s the frankly gorgeous Church of England church of St John the Baptist, but just down the road is the Methodist Church, to give the stone cottages a choice of prayer on the Sabbath. Between the two the Dun Cow pub satisfies those who choose to ignore part of one of the churches’ doctrine.

The Sports Pavilion is one of those little gems of local football that those who set arcane rules will miss out on. Perhaps the most delicious aspect is the way the road snakes down to the car park, so you glimpse the ground between the newly built houses as you make your way down. When you’re there, the photographer in you just winds back the lens to take in as much of the view as possible!

If you want to know how I have a capacity of watching almost an endless supply of lower level football, this game is why. For me, this is what football should be all about, two village teams slugging it out in the warm evening sun. Hornton can get promoted, so this remarkable comeback gives them hope still of Premier Division football for next season. I could talk about the misplaced passes and the goalkeeping howlers, but what would be the point? It was entertaining, honest and sporting, and in a bucolic setting. And after all that’s said and done, what more do you need?