Date: Sat 17 Aug 2019

By David Simpson

Humble Biggleswade ready

The first match at Step 4

Well, the wait is finally over!! 119 days after clinching the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division title at Stotfold's Roker Park, we make our BetVictor Southern League bow on Saturday (17th August) with a trip across Bedfordshire to take on AFC Dunstable.

Whilst nothing is ever won or lost in terms of the whole campaign on an opening day, Saturday's game will provide us in particular with some insight into what we will be up against in our first season at this level. As we've found in our journey so far, experience counts for a lot as you progress through the levels and AFC Dunstable certainly has that in their ranks.

They have plenty of firepower with BJ Christie, in particular, having plundered over 200 goals for the club and he will no doubt be flanked by the likes of Jermaine Hall and Drew Roberts, who had a prolific goalscoring record with former clubs Arlesey, Chesham and St Neots to name a few. Their man between the sticks is no stranger to us at Biggleswade FC. Dan Green was a double-award winner with us in 2017/18. This earned him a move to Welwyn Garden City before making the switch during last season to Creasey Park.

The ODs have followed a similar rise to ourselves, albeit over a slightly longer period. From 2004 when they changed their name from Old Dunstablians to their present title, they spent an 11-year period in the Spartan South Midlands League progressing from Division Two through to winning the Premier Division title with 102 points in 2015/16. Since their promotion to Step 4, they've always been in and around the play-offs finishing 5th, 7th and then 10th last term, so they will no doubt have aspirations of improving on that this time around.

For ourselves, it will be a proud moment whatever the result on Saturday as we attempt to quickly find our feet at this new level. The day will start on a sombre note though as we observe a minute's silence in memory of Southern League Club Liaison Officer and FA official Adrian Titcombe who sadly passed away this week.

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