ONCE again we've all been on that emotional rollercoaster they call a football season with the usual thrills and spills to report. One thing's for sure, though, it won't be forgotten in a hurry.
The 2001/02 season began simmering at quite a temperature and just kept hotting up — leaving supporters in the midst of the highs and lows which every season, it seems, contains.
This was the year that Farnborough Town consolidated a top seven finish in their first season back in the Conference, while Aldershot Town made up for missing out on promotion yet again with a fine victory in the Hampshire Senior Cup at St Mary's.
It was also a great year for little Fleet Town who stormed their way up the Jewson Wessex League table to win promotion into the Southern League, thanks to their inspirational boss Steve Beeks.
In celebration and by popular demand from last year's efforts, the News and Mail Sports team of Jon Couch, Elliott Florence and Sarah Larch have once again put their heads together to concoct this light-hearted review of what's been a memorable season.
The best, the worst and the outright bizarre are featured once again, along with some of our personal recollections of life on the road as a sports reporter.
Unfortunately no prizes are on offer for the recipients of these awards, just a pat on the back and a thank-you for making our jobs in covering your favourite team, such a pleasure.
For now, it's time to catch up on the Saturday afternoon shopping trips and enjoying some sunshine. But with the World Cup just around the corner, it's bound to wet a few appetites in time for what promises to be another memorable season next time round.
The News and Mail would also like to thank Ian Morsman, Mark Sandom, Steve Bowers, Lee Crabb, Eric Marsh and various other contributors for their help and assistance this year.
Roll on next season!
The awards are as follows:
1= Aldershot Town 3 Havant & Waterloovile 1
1= Bristol Rovers 1 Aldershot Town 0
3 Farnborough Town 2 Barnet 1
4 Fleet 1 Andover 1
5 Aldershot 4 Farnborough 3
Farnborough Town 1 Carshalton Athletic 1
Canvey Island 1 Aldershot Town 3
Yeovil Town 0 Farnborough Town 1
Most disappointing result:
Farnborough Town 1 Burton Albion 1
Bristol Rovers 1 Aldershot Town 0
Farnborough Town 0 Woking 1
Goal of the Year:
1 Tony Taggart's 30-yard free kick for Farnborough at Hayes.
2 John Nutter's long range special for Aldershot against Purfleet
3 Gianfranco Zola's 25-yarder for Chelsea reserves against West Ham at the Rec
Miss of the season:
Mark Watson in the dying minutes for the Shots against Bristol Rovers at the Rec
Moment of the year:
1 Aldershot lifting the Hants Cup in front of 3,000 fans at St Mary's
2 Boro celebrating the form which saw 21 goals in five games
3 Fleet clinching promotion to the Doc Martens eastern division
4 Zola again, dedicating his fine FA Cup goal for Chelsea against Norwich for terminally-ill Camberley boy Matthew Aston
Most disgraceful incident:
The George Borg/Mark Pye incident at Harrow Borough
The Ollie Adedeji and Mark Graham fight at Billericay
Treatment of Borg by many towards the end of his Shots reign
Aldershot and Reading fans clashing during pre-season
The first two of the above
Westley placing Lenny Piper on the transfer list
Breath of fresh air:
The form of Boro's young quartet Chris Piper, Taggart, Green and Holloway
Terry Brown and the loyalty shown by Stuart Cash
Steve Beeks at Fleet Town
Most frustrating journey:
Farnborough's re-arranged trip to Morecambe on the final Thursday of the
The trip back for Boro fans from Halifax
Most worrying time:
Graham Westley's take over plans for Kingstonian
Inconsistent performances of referees this season
The state of some pitches still, despite the better weather this year
Best burgers and fast food
Camberley Town (again..)
Most improved player:
Dean Green and Gary Holloway (Hampton to Farnborough)
Dave Carroll (Wycombe to Aldershot)
1 Gareth Howells
2 Micky Warner
3 Paul Harford
Players to watch 2002/03:
1 Lee Riddell (Boro)
2 Ali Shaw (Shots)
3 Nick Sowden (Shots)
Manager of the Year:
Steve Beeks (Fleet)
Most helpful clubman:
Steve Cantle (Fleet Town)
Shots fans reference to Stafford Browne, sung to the tune of the 'Vieira' song from Arsenal supporters (ask them)
Sorry Boro boys… still, One-to-the-two-to-the-three Barry Laker
Most regular occurrence:
Steve Watson finding his way into the referee's notebook
Farnborough goalkeeper's forming a queue in the treatment room
Lenny Piper playing well then getting dropped
Rarity of the Year
Consistent refereeing decisions!
Quotes of the Year:
Brown before Aldershot's game with Hendon: "You have seven games to show me you want to be part of Aldershot's future.
That future starts today."
Cash on Borg after the Billericay game: "I think it's fair to say that our friendship has ended."
Player of the Year:
1 Lenny Piper (Boro)
2 Jason Chewins (Shots)
3 Chris Piper (Boro)
4 Ian Mancey (Fleet)