HAVING lost several key players to rivals Cammell Laird over the summer, Division One champions Vauxhall Reserves are in transition, but they started the new season where they left off.
The Motormen progressed to a Bill Weight Memorial Trophy final showdown with Lairds by beating Wallasey outfit Ashville 2-1 last Monday, with goals from Marc Evans and Clint Hargreaves.
Vauxhall then began their league campaign on Saturday with a 3-0 victory over neighbours Ellesmere Port, formerly Shell, with strikes from Dave Davies, Mike McLoughlan and Ryan Forde.
The Port's other Division One side, Castrol, kicked off on Friday with a 2-1 loss at home to Heswall.
Ian Parry put the home side ahead but the visitors replied through Gareth McEvoy and Kevin Ryan to take the spoils.
There was similar woe for Capenhurst Villa in Division Two the following day as they fell 3-1 at home to Pavilions of Runcorn.
There was joy for newlypromoted Willaston, elevated to Division Two after the resignation of Aintree Villa Reserves, as a Lee Cairns effort was enough to secure a 1-0 success at FC Pensby.
Ellesmere Port Reserves got the better of Capenhurst Villa Reserves in a seven-goal derby thriller in Division Three, winning 4-3.
John Coombs and Charlie Davies bagged braces for Port while Ben Powell hit two for Villa with Alan Brown completing the scoring.
Grange Athletic got the campaign off to a losing start as they were beaten 4-2 at home to West Kirby Reserves, despite goals from Phil Selby and Carl Burns.
* Castrol Social were the area's group-stage winners in the Carlsberg penalty competition and will be joined by Maghull, Mersey Royal and Pavilions in the final.
* Fixtures - Saturday - First Division: Ashville v Castrol Social; Ellesmere Port v Newton; Poulton Victoria v Vauxhall Res.
Second Division: Capenhurst Villa v Poulton Victoria Res.
Third Division: Manweb Res v Capenhurst Villa Res; Newton Res v Ellesmere Port Res; St Werburgh's v Grange Athletic.
Tuesday (6.30pm) - Second Division: Capenhurst Villa v Heswall; New Brighton v Willaston.
Third Division: Chester Nomads v Ellesmere Port Res.
Wednesday, August 27 - First Division: Castrol Social v Ellesmere Port; Vauxhall Res v Heswall (7.30).
Third Division: MBNA v Capenhurst Villa Res; New Brighton Res v Grange Athletic.