Grier's Guide to Imber Court
When: Tuesday 26th March, 7.45pm kick-off
The town: Representatives of London but playing just outside the capital in a residential area somewhere around the borders of Esher, East Molesey and Thames Ditton.
The ground: Imber Court Sports Club, Ember Lane, East Molesey, KT8 0BT. It has a decent main stand and a shallow covered terrace behind one of the goals. Given the closeness to Kingston and how often we've played there over the years, it's hard to imagine there are many regular Ks fans who have never been.
Directions: From Kingston, head to Hampton Court and then past the Tiffin sports ground, turning right at the roundabout. Thames Ditton is the nearest station but it's also walkable from Esher, Hampton Court and, at a push, Hinchley Wood. From Kingston the 411 bus goes reasonably near as well.
Our record there: Generally not great although our last visit in this competition saw us win on penalties after a turgid goalless draw. We've lost three cup finals there in recent years though as well as many league games.
Recent form: The former Isthmian stalwarts were deeply unhappy when the summer restructure saw them moved to the Southern League, in part because it was the catalyst for their long-serving Essex-based manager Jim Cooper to leave the club. The switch doesn't seem to have done them much harm though as they're third in their new league at time of writing and very much in the hunt for promotion to Conference South. Wins over Molesey and Merstham have got them to this stage of the Surrey Cup.
Players to watch: In Max Blackmore and Jack Mazzone they have two of the top scorers in the Southern League, who are both sure to be a threat to the Ks defence. Right back Josh Webb had a short spell with us at the start of the season.
Crowd: The Met are not known for having a large or vocal fanbase but given the closeness to Kingston it's usually a ground that we travel to in good numbers.
Drinking: There are no pubs in the immediate area around the ground but there's plenty of choice for those who don't mind a long-ish walk or a short taxi ride. There are four decent options in Thames Ditton (riverside pubs The Swan and The Albany, upmarket gastropub The Red Lion and the recently refurbed George and Dragon); roughly on the way from Esher are the cosy Marney's Village Inn and the large and traditional Greyhound; or at Hampton Court there's smart gastropub The Prince of Wales and The Albion, another recently refurb.
Food: All of the pubs listed above do food but there's not much else particularly near the ground without doing a detour.