Surprise derby against neighbours for Hucknall Town next season

NMAC11-0612-19'Stags v Luton'Duncan Russell

NMAC11-0612-19'Stags v Luton'Duncan Russell

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Relegated Hucknall Town have learned that they will face a surprise local derby with near-neighbours Basford United next season.

While Town have dropped through the leagues like a stone in recent seasons, Basford have risen like a rocket, having left the Notts Senior League only three years ago.

And now they are set to clash in the Northern Counties East League, Premier Division for the 2012/13 campaign.

The FA’s Leagues Committee has drawn up its proposed constitution for the league, which sits on step five of the non-league pyramid.

Town were always expected to be placed in the Premier Division after their disastrous drop from the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League, Division One South last term.

But Basford have been surprisingly promoted two levels after running away with the East Midlands Counties League championship, winning 31 of their 36 games and amassing 95 points and 95 goals.

It was their second successive title after landing the Central Midlands League’s South Division at their first attempt in 2011/12.

Managed by Daz Saunders and Andy Frawley, Basford boast several ex-Town players, plus others who have played in the Dispatch district.

Familiar names include Aidan Brady, Richard Harrison, Fabian Smith, Richard Harrison, David Boafo, Theo Smith and Courtney Hastings.

Other local derbies for The Yellows next season will be against Long Eaton United, Heanor Town, Retford United and Worksop Parramore.

But most of their opponents hail from the Yorkshire area.

Meanwhile The Yellows have learned that they did win something last season after all.

For they scooped the runners-up spot in the Evo-Stik Division One South Fair Play awards, earning a £500 cash prize.

Said a club spokesman: “Despite an incredibly difficult second half of the season, the club would like to congratulate tghe management team and the players.

“The award is in sharp contrast to previous seasons when the club took hefty financial penalties for poor discipline.

“The award is a fitting tribute to all the players who turned up, week in week out, and represented the club for no fee.”

Town’s next big date is the special Armed Forces Day match, highlighted in last week’s Dispatch.

Watnall Road is to host a game between a combined services team (Army, Navy and RAF) and a Nottingham All-Stars eleven on Thrsday June 27 (kick-off 7 pm).

And several ex-Nottingham Forest stars have been lined up to take part. They include former England duo Des Walker and Steve Hodge, plus Jason Lee, Nigel Jemson, Gary Bull and Craig Armstrong, who spent a period at Town.

THE FULL LINE-UP OF CLUBS IN THE NORTHERN COUNTIES EAST LEAGUE, PREMIER DIVISION NEXT SEASON IS --

Albion Sports (Bradford)

Armthorpe Welfare (South Yorkshire)

Athersley Recreation (Barnsley)

Barton Town Old Boys (Lincolnshire)

Basford United

Bridlington Town

Brighouse Town (West Yorkshire)

Garforth Town (West Yorkshire)

Glasshoughton Welfare (West Yorkshire)

Heanor Town

HUCKNALL TOWN

Lincoln Moorlands Railway

Liversedge (West Yorkshire)

Long Eaton United

Maltby Main (South Yorkshire)

Nostell Miners Welfare (Wakefield)

Parkgate (Rotherham)

Pickering Town (North Yorkshire)

Retford United

Staveley Miners Welfare

Tadcaster Albion (North Yorkshire)

Thackley (Bradford)

Winterton Rangers (Scunthorpe)

Worksop Parramore