Cornforth aware of importance of Premier Cup clash for Leiston at Woodbridge

Leiston boss Ian Cornforth Photo: PAUL VOLLER

Leiston boss Ian Cornforth Photo: PAUL VOLLER

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New Leiston Ian Cornforth has stressed how important the Turners Hyundai Suffolk Premier Cup is to the club, writes Nick Garnham.

Leiston, who had never previously lifted the Suffolk Premier Cup, have won the competition in each of the last two seasons.

With the club, who have seen eight of last season's side that started the final since leave - only Kyle Hammond, Rob Eagle and Noel Aitkens remain - have endured a miserable start to the campaign.

They are rooted at the foot of the BetVictor Southern League Premier Central Division with just one point from their opening ten matches.

So it would be easy to think that this season's Suffolk Premier Cup may be deemed as a distraction, but Cornforth is relishing the challenge after taking over the hotseat from Stuart Boardley.

His young side travel to Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division side Woodbridge Town, who play two steps below Leiston, tomorrow evening for a second-round tie.

Cornforth said: "We may be a Step 3 football club but we won't underestimate them. Everyone at Leiston is fully aware of how important the game and the competition is to the club.

"It is a big game for us against a very decent Woodbridge side.

"We will give them the respect they deserve. I know them well from my time at Hadleigh and Ipswich Wanderers and they have a good group of players who have been together for some time.

"We have not got the experience, but we have got a lot of young talent and I have no fear of playing those boys against anyone.

"It is going to be a massive challenge for us to defend the trophy with so many strong sides in the Premier Cup, especially as some of these boys have not played in the competition before."

Tomorrow's other second-round fixture sees Long Melford host fellow Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division side Stowmarket Town at Stoneylands.

Stowmarket are currently eight points clear at the top of the table, while Long Melford sit in 15th place, but the visitors will be mindful of the fact that they lost 3-1 at Long Melford in the League Challenge Cup Quarter-Final last season.

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