The Darts return to league action this weekend hosting last season’s Isthmian Premier playoff winners Bognor Regis Town at Princes Park.
Dartford bounced back from their last National South fixture that saw them lose 3-0 away to Weston-super-Mare. Tony Burman guided his side to the F.A Cup fourth qualifying round on Saturday with a comprehensive 6-1 win at Needham Market.
In the previous round the Darts had to keep their wits about them against lower league opposition, this time they negotiated any potential upset the Isthmian Premier side could pose. Alfie Pavey struck a first half hat-trick to put Dartford on their way. In the second half, Tom Murphy, Andy Pugh and Ryan Hayes added three more and it could have been more had Elliot Bradbrook not missed a penalty earlier on in the half.
Dartford created fond memories for the fans after last playing Bognor Regis Town in 2010. On the final day of the season having already clinched the Isthmian Premier League title, the Darts won 2-0 with Jamie Coyle scoring the Darts 100th goal of the campaign and Lee Noble adding the 101st. However, the fixture earlier in that season at Princes Park was a much tougher affair. Bognor Regis Town were bottom of the table, where they finished the campaign but it was future Dartford striker Jason Prior who grabbed the headlines in a 3-3 draw. Prior alerted Burman to his potential with a superb hat-trick. Danny Harris scored a brace for the Darts but it was right back Billy Burgess who saved Dartford’s blushes with a 94th minute equaliser.
Bognor Regis Town are still finding their feet in the National South and are eighteenth in the division, thirteen places below the Darts. The Sussex club may be waiting for their first league victory in the league, but they did manage their maiden away win of the season on the weekend. Also in F.A Cup action, the Rocks were paired up with rivals Eastbourne Borough in the third qualifying round. The tie was made even more tasty by the fact that former Bognor Regis Town boss, Jamie Howell now manages the Sports. Ollie Pearce scored both goals either side of the break to make sure the Rocks came out on top.
In their last league fixture Bognor Regis Town threw away a two goal lead with twenty minutes remaining. Pearce netted his fifth National South goal of the campaign in the first half before James Muitt made it 2-0 in the second half, also notching his fifth for the season. Gloucester City hit back when substitute Edward Williams scored a brace and rescued a point for the visitors.
One player who could make a return to Princes Park after a brief spell with the Darts is Ben Swallow. The winger was part of the 2013/14 National League squad that finished in the relegation zone but were reprieved. Swallow made 11 appearances with seven of those coming off the substitutes bench. This season he has been a regular in the Bognor Regis Town starting eleven having signed for the club in the summer from Havant and Waterlooville.
Head to Head
Dartford wins: 3 / Bognor Regis Town: 1 / Draws: 4
|24.04.2010||Bognor Regis Town||0||Dartford||2|
|07.11.2009||Dartford||3||Bognor Regis Town||3|
|02.05.1981||Dartford||1||Bognor Regis Town||1|
|13.12.1980||Bognor Regis Town||2||Dartford||2|
|01.05.1980||Bognor Regis Town||2||Dartford||0|
|10.11.1979||Dartford||2||Bognor Regis Town||0|
Current League Form
|Dartford (LWWWDL)||Bognor Regis Town (DLLLDL)|
|Eastbourne Borough||H||4-2||Hemel Hempstead Town||A||1-3|
|Hampton & Richmond||A||2-2||Chelmsford City||A||0-0|
|East Thurrock United||H||0-1||Eastbourne Borough||H||0-1|
Dartford have scored three or more goals in seven of their opening 15 matches. One less time than the first 15 games of the 2009/10 campaign when they were promoted at the end of the season.
The Darts are top scorers in the National South with 27 goals, one ahead of Braintree Town.
Bognor Regis Town have the third leakiest defence conceding 23 times, only Whitehawk (36) and Oxford City (27) have let in more goals.
On This Day
Dartford have only won once on 7 October since reforming and that was eleven years ago in the F.A Trophy Preliminary round against Ilford, the Darts ran out 4-1 winners on their way to second qualifying round. Dartford had to wait eight years to play on this day again, this time losing 1-0 away to Bristol Rovers in the National League. The match was marred by an incident where Dartford goalkeeper Jason Brown was racially abused by a Rovers fan. Aside from a 0-0 draw with Deal Town in 1995, the Darts have lost the other three outings with 18 goals being scored. Fisher Athletic won the Southern League Cup encounter 5-3 in 1997, Rothwell Town won 3-2 in 2000 and Bromley were victorious by the same score in the Kent Senior Cup in 2003.
DATE: Saturday 7th October 2017
VENUE: Princes Park, Grassbanks, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1RT
KICK OFF: 3:00pm
TURNSTILES: Open from 12:30pm
Adults: £14, Concessions £7, U16’s FREE, Family Ticket ( 2 adults, 2 children) £20, Any Premier league or EFL 2017/2018 season ticket holder £7 ( season ticket will be required to be shown as proof)
SEATING: Seating is available on a first come first served basis in certain areas of the stadium.
FACILITIES: Bar and food open from 12:30pm
PARKING: Parking is free of charge in the clubs car park but is a first come first served basis.
MATCH UPDATES: Available on Twitter @dartfordfc and on website www.dartfordfc.com
MATCH SPONSOR: Aston Anderson Estate Agents for more information please click HERE