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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

Pre-Season Friendly Match Report (10/08/2022): Caversham United vs. Hype Train FC

Updated: May 12, 2023

The squad (red) celebrate the opening goal, scored by Owen Bowbrick (10). Photography by Sam Austin

Hype Train FC will be playing across both Saturday and Sunday next season, with the team competing in the East Berkshire Football League and the Reading & District Sunday League. You can follow all of the team's season coverage right here as we provide match reports and photo galleries from our third season as a club! All aboard.

Match Report: Caversham United vs. Hype Train FC

Date: Wednesday 8th August 2022

Competition: Pre-Season Friendly (18:45pm KO)

Opposition: Caversham United

Location: Mapledurham Playing Fields, Caversham, Reading, RG4 7ER

Final Score: Caversham United 0-3 Hype Train FC

Photographer: Sam Austin (@HypeTrainSam)

Match Report:

The train's encounter against Caversham United was the team's 5th match in pre-season ahead of the 2022/23 season, with the team taking on the RDSL Division One outfit, and fellow RSSL founders, on an arid, dry pitch in midweek. This was the third time the team had taken on a Caversham team, with the hosts playing a mixture of their First team and Reserve squad against the team.

The game itself started at 18:45pm and was coated with strong sunlight, high temperatures on an arid pitch, with the game a back and forth contest for the opening 15 minutes. Jake Holloway was called into action twice in the net, drawing two saves from Caversham counters as they looked to apply early pressure.

The team's first sizeable attack forward in the 15th minute was rewarded with a goal and the move started with Joe Sawyer at right back playing a nice ball down the line for Vijay Gurung to chase. Gurung did well with Phil Newport to combine down the wing which led to a throw. Liam Bowbrick's long reach found his brother, Owen Bowbrick in the penalty area, with the throw collected by Owen and finished with a shot that went underneath the Caversham goalkeeper for a 1-0 lead.

The team were called offside twice in counters with the ball ending up in the net twice, though Newport, who had a goal ruled out just minutes prior, would exact his revenge when a deep through ball by Owen Bowbrick was collected by Newport, with the Number 9 taking the ball away from Caversham's central defenders with pace before finishing calmly past the opposing shot stopper with a neat finish with the outside of his right boot to double the team's lead.

The game went in at the half-time break at 2-0 against what was a mixture of the Caversham first team , with the second-half allowing their newly established Reserve outfit take to the field. The game was more controlled from the train as we tried to work on passing sequences, though several nearly chances for Newport, Yazeed Alanazi, Alex Ward, and Cosmin Huhulea presented themselves, whilst the Goat's only had one shot on target in the half - a free-kick that was bending wide of Robert Austin's right post.

The crucial third goal arrived in the 86th minute when Alanazi exploited the Caversham defensive line to win a corner after a fine tackle. The resulting set-piece saw Alanazi and Carter talk through a sequence, with Carter's eventual low cross tucket home with a fine flicked finished by Alanazi that looped over the diving Caversham keeper.

The result means that we maintain our unbeaten record against Caversham (2 wins, 1 draw), with a trio of scorers on the mark to ensure that squad returned to winning ways ahead of another pre-season outing at the weekend against Southcote FC at Burghfield's CSA.

Thoughts from Club Secretary, Robert Austin:

"The team have a good relationship with the team at Caversham. We train opposite them during the winter months, we have a lot of recent shared history having created the RSSL together, and we very much look forward to every encounter against Paul Gutteridge and his team.

The friendly truly was a game of two very distinct halves. The first was slightly more competitive with chances for both sides, but we showed our qualities on the counter and allowed us to spread our legs and attack the hosts on a dry pitch, whilst we were compact defensively and always assured in the game.

The second-half was more experimental as we faced virtually a new team, albeit with slightly less quality, and at times we struggled to adapt to the game. We tried to pass more to control the game, but the pitch and the heat didn't allow that, as well as the team having a constant out ball on the left as we had acres of space to drive forward. The team did well though tomanage the game, and never really allowed the opposition a route back into the game.

The result was fully deserved by the guys on the day, and we're thankful that Caversham allowed us to play a rare midweek friendly, we hope that the team kicks on in RDSL Division 1 this season, and see you down the line."

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Manager: Robert Austin

Starting 11:

GK: Jake Holloway

DEF: Joe Sawyer

DEF: Chris Marshall

DEF: Vince van Lembergen

DEF: Josh Watkins

MID: Vijay Gurung

MID: Liam Bowbrick

MID: Owen Bowbrick

MID: Tom Williams

MID: Alvin Mugabe

FOR: Phil Newport


SUB: Gino Izzo

SUB: Yazeed Alanazi

SUB: Cosmin Huhulea

SUB: Robert Austin

SUB: Jamie Carter

SUB: Alex Ward

Goals & Assists:

Goal 1: O. Bowbrick (goal), L. Bowbrick (assist)

Goal 2: Newport (goal), O. Bowbrick (assist)

Goal 3: Alanazi (goal), Carter (assist)

Want to know more about The Hype Train?

The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in general football and Fantasy sports reporting, starting with Fantasy Premier League (FPL), before expanding to MLS Fantasy coverage in 2018.

We pride ourselves in providing beautiful graphics, statistics, in-depth analytical reporting and free weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb rankings tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review games, live sport, and professional wrestling.

In 2019, Hype Train Football Club was formed, becoming the first Fantasy Football website to take to the field. HTFC is a socially active team across social and web channels, providing regular match highlights, match reports, comprehensive player statistics and unique player profiles. We won both Goal of the Season Awards in the Berkshire and County FA regions, with Callum Parr-Jones winning the Berks & Bucks FA award, whilst Martin King won the PlaySport UK award.

In 2021, we formed the Reading Sunday Social League (RSSL), a competitive Sunday League involving 8 teams in its debut season. During the 2021/22 season, we won our first-ever trophy, lifting the East Berkshire Football League's Presidents Cup!

The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog' in 2016 by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), and were again shortlisted as a finalist in 2019 in the 'Best Fantasy Football Blog' category.

You can follow us on Twitter, Like us on Facebook, follow Hype Train FC on Instagram, subscribe to our YouTube channel for exclusive content, visit our club's dedicate website, or visit our website here at

Believe The Hype!


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