Horsham’s supporters have a choice of venue for their Tuesday night football fix, with the first team travelling to East Grinstead and the re-formed U23s making their first outing of the summer away to Loxwood. It has been a busy summer so far for Dom Di Paola’s senior side, what with getting accustomed to the club’s excellent new facilities and the little matter of six preparation matches thus far, and, with just two more fixtures before the start of the new Isthmian League season, the Hornets boss will be hoping to use this and Saturday’s visit to Burgess Hill to fine tune his squad and tactics ahead of the visit of Leatherhead on August 10th.
On Saturday the Hornets showed admirable character to overturn a 2-0 half-time deficit away to Wimborne Town to level the scores just seconds from the end through an audacious strike by Charlie Harris and the former East Grinstead man will be looking to enhance his credentials on his return to his old stomping ground tomorrow night. Chris Smith, Kieran Lavery, Joe Shelley and Josh James are all expected to rejoin the squad after missing the weekend trip to Dorset while East Grinstead will be hoping to record a first victory of the summer before their campaign kicks off with a home fixture with Haywards Heath Town. The Wasps have been beaten in each of their five pre-season friendlies, albeit against higher league opposition in Dorking Wanderers, Tonbridge Angels, Maidstone United, Lewes and Heybridge Swifts but with ex-Hornets Brannon Daly, Dan Pearse and Curtis Gayler in their side, local pride is certain to ensure this friendly meeting won’t be lacking in passion between two teams that were league opponents last season. The match kicks-off at 7.30pm, with adult admission £5, seniors £2 and U18s £1.
Closer to home, Mark Hawthorne will get the opportunity to run his eye over his latest recruits at U23 level when they make the far shorter trip to The Recreation Ground, Loxwood, where they will take on The Magpies’ first team in a 7.45pm kick-off. The Hornets have re-entered a team in to the Isthmian League’s Bluefin Development League for the 2019/20 season and Hawthorne will be keen to see how his new charges fare after a busy few months of recruitment. Although we have no idea what sort of team Loxwood will put out, Horsham fans won’t need reminding that modern day club legend Eddie French remains an integral part of the Magpies’ set-up, having made more than 300 appearances for the club since his time with the Hornets. Admission at Loxwood is FREE OF CHARGE.