Powerchair team enjoy a fine season despite postponement

Prior to the postponement of the footballing calendar, the Sevenoaks powerchair football team were on course for another successful season. 

At regional league level, the senior side are on course to claim their first ever south east league success. After going unbeaten last year and losing the title by a single point to Brighton, Oaks set out to claim their maiden regional title. 

Despite losing an opening game, ironically to Brighton, Sevenoaks have claimed six wins and one draw to move into top spot. With four games to go, if this season is to be completed, they are in prime position to claim the crown.

Their younger development squad counterparts, also battling in Division 1 of the South East League, are competing admirably and are currently in 5th place. They are on course to retain their place in the league ahead of next season.

In the WFA National League Premiership, Sevenoaks have had an excellent first half of the 2019/20 season. After scraping to league safety on the last weekend of the previous season, Oaks have grown in confidence competing at the elite level of powerchair football in England and have matured as a team as a result.

This newfound maturity and belief saw the team up to 3rd place after the opening league weekend in September, collecting seven points from a possible 15, including a superb 1-1 draw with previous league winners Northern Thunder. This was then followed up with 9 points from 12 just over a month later, including three clean sheets against Nottinghamshire, St Georges Knights and Manchester United PFC. 

November also saw Kyle Alexander receive his England cap following his participation in the 2017 FIPFA World Cup, in front of his family, teammates and fellow players. 

Sevenoaks Powerchair duo Adam McAvoy and Kyle Alexander with his first England cap

February’s fixtures resulted in another six points, thanks to victories against AFC Bournemouth and Sale United. At the time of postponement, Sevenoaks were up to 6th place in the league with 22 points from 13 games, essentially guaranteeing safety for another season. This has been doubly impressive with the average age of the national league squad being just 17 years old, competing against many players far older and experienced. 

Seven players from SPFC are also part of the FA’s disability football performance pathway, taking part in the regional emerging talent programme for powerchair football, demonstrating their progress as players within the sport. Their aim will be to move into the FA’s national emerging talent squad, featuring the best young players in England. 

With the nature of powerchair football participation, players are classed as high risk due to their pre-existing health conditions. 

The governing body, The WFA, were very aware of the risks as the Covid-19 virus swept across the country and were quick to postpone powerchair competition, before advising clubs to halt all activity soon after.