STRUGGLING Cowes Sports have a vital six-pointer as they travel to Christchurch in the Sydenhams Wessex Premier on Saturday.

The Yachtsmen, on a miserable run of seven defeats in their last eight matches, sit 16th, one place above the drop zone, against a side also struggling, a place above them on goal difference.

Cowes, who have been plagued by injuries, with crocked skipper and top scorer, John McKie, their biggest miss.

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They have also found luck in short supply.

However, they go into the game having conceded 15 goals in the past four away games in the league, a problem manager and ex-Cowes defender Vic Sanders is desperate to address.

After they shipped five goals at home to Downton last Saturday, Newport could not have a much more difficult follow-up fixture as they host Sydenhams Wessex Division 1 league leaders Amesbury Town this weekend.

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Port, who sit in ninth place, face an Amesbury side which as won 14 of its 17 league games this season and lost just once.

Fellow Division 1 side East Cowes Vics, who have slipped to 14th following a string of poor results recently, four defeats on the bounce, host Ringwood Town, a place below the Islanders.

Vics boss Steve Brougham will have been working hard with his defence this week after his side conceded 18 goals in those four losses.

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East Cowes Vics boss Steve Brougham.  FILE

There is plenty of cup action involving Island teams on Saturday.

In the third round of the Hampshire Intermediate Cup, in form Brading Town host Netley Central Sports, while Whitecroft and Barton travel to Compton.

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At the same stage of he Hampshire Junior A Cup, Ryde Saints face Carisbrooke United in the only all-Island clash.

In Division 1 of the Harwoods Isle of Wight League, there will be plenty at stake as high-scoring Ventnor host second place Northwood St John, who suffered a shock set-back losing at home to lowly Sandown on Saturday.

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However, a Northwood win would bring them to within two points of runaway leaders Whitecroft and Barton, while a Ventnor win would see them join the chasing pack at the top.

Bottom side Osborne Coburg host third-bottom Sandown, while Cowes Sports Reserves face improving Binstead & COB at Westwood Park.

All matches kick-off at 2pm.

                                               SATURDAY'S FIXTURES

Sydenhams Wessex Premier: Christchurch v Cowes Sport.

Sydenhams Wessex Division 1: East Cowes Vics v Ringwood Town; Newport v Amesbury Town.

Hampshire Intermediate Cup, third round: Bournemouth Manor v ECS; Brading Town v Netley Central Sports; Chamberlayne Athletic v Shanklin; Compton v Whitecroft & Barton Sports; Pan Sports v Tadley Calleva Reserves; West Wight v Clanfield.

Hampshire Junior A Cup, third round: ECS Reserves v Wymering; Kingsclere v Wootton; Newchurch v Tadley Calleva A; Niton Community v Capital; Oakfield Reserves v Fleet Spurs A; Ryde Saints v Carisbrooke United.

The Ken Morris IW Junior A Cup, second round: Whitecroft & Barton Sports Reserves v Brighstone.

Harwoods Renault IW League Division 1: Cowes Sports Reserves v Binstead & COB; Osborne Coburg v Sandown; Ventnor v Northwood St John.

Division 2: Adgestone v Seaview; East Cowes A v Wroxall; Yarmouth & Calbourne v Oakfield.

Combination 1: Binstead & COB Reserves v West Wight Reserves; Northwood St John Reserves v Ventnor Reserves; Sandown Reserves v Brading Town Reserves; Shanklin Reserves v Osborne Coburg Reserves.

Combination 2: Bembridge Reserves v Yarmouth & Calbourne Reserves; Carisbrooke United Reserves v Newchurch Reserves; Seaview Reserves v Wootton Reserves.