Sunderland Sunday League: Premier title fight will go to the wire
The Premier Division title race looks set to go to the wire in a hectic finish to the season.
Last week’s winter wipe-out adds to the fixture backlog facing clubs, but there is sure to be plenty of excitement in the closing weeks of the campaign.
Only five points separate there top eight teams in the 10-team top division.
Victoria Gardens lead the way with 19 points from eight games, one ahead of RCA Grangetown Florists and TC Plastics, though the latter have played four matches more than the other two.
Southwick are well in the running, three points further back, alongside defending champions Hylton Castle TWR Group, with the Suddickers having 11 games still to play, one more than the top two.
At the bottom, Silksworth CW’s recent victory over Hylton Castle TWR Group has drawn them level on points with The Lansdowne, though Silky have just four matches to play.
Ryhope Top House lead the way in the First Division, proudly sitting 13 points clear of closest challengers Ashbrooke Hendon.
With just six matches to go, Top House look title certainties, though Sunderland Railway Club could conceivably overtake them, having dropped just one draw and one defeat so far.
Railway, though, have 14 league matches to fit in and promotion is likely to be their real target.
The bottom five clubs are separated by just two points, with Washington Colliery, propping up the table, needing a good run over their final six games to lift themselves out of trouble.
The other four – Port of Call, Jolly Potters, The Stella and Royal Marine – all have games in hand on Colliery.
The Second Division title has already been wrapped up by impressive Grange Park, who have 49 points on board from their 17 matches, with 74 goals scored.
Grange Park have just one league game remaining but have designs on silverware in the Billy Pemberton Memorial Trophy too.
The Park, third in the table, look the best bets for second spot. They trail Pennywell Comrades by two points but have two games in hand on their rivals.
AFC Wearside are bottom on nine points, with four games to go, a point behind Ryhope CW, who only have two matches left.
Games are running out fast in the Third Division, and the title race promises to be a thriller in the final few weeks.
Wearmouth CW Juniors top the pile with 34 points, but have just two games still to play.
The first comes away to Kings Arms tomorrow.
Park View sit second on 32 points, with three matches left, with Washington New Tavern one point worse off, but also with three games to go.
Bottom club Millfield Oddies have just nine points to show for their effort in 15 matches, two fewer than Lakeside SSC, who have only one game left.
Millfield Free Gardeners will be looking over their shoulder in third-bottom spot, three points above Lakeside, albeit with a game in hand.
The 12-team Fourth Division has a long way to go, though the title looks destined for Washington Arms, who have won all 14 league games so far to sit five points clear.
The Grange, who have played two games more, are second, closely followed by Herrington CW and Terminus.
Washington Juniors Teal Farm will have a big say in the promotion race, despite sitting in sixth place. They are just seven points off second spot, with 10 matches still to fit in.
AFC Houghton are set to finish bottom.They are level on three points with Whitburn Panthers but have just three matches to fulfil, while their rivals have nine.