Kevin Grainger has revealed that he will be gutted if his Newmarket Town side cannot defeat Kirkley and Pakefield on Saturday, writes Graham Clark.
In what promises to be a tight clash, with Kirkley and Pakefield sitting just one place behind Town in fourth in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division, Jockeys boss Grainger feels there should only be one outcome.
“Kirkley are strong all round and are well coached and deserve to be where they are in the league,” said Grainger. “It will be tough and while we don’t seem for some reason to play as well at home as we do away I am confident we will beat them and I will be pretty gutted if we don’t.”
Town will head into the fixture in high spirits after posting a 2-0 win away to fierce rivals Mildenhall Town on Saturday despite having to play 50 minutes with just 10 men.
The Jockeys won the match thanks to goals from centre-half Mark Webster and a late effort from Luke Parkinson were reduced in numbers following the 40th-minute sending off of Jake Wayne.
“We were excellent on Saturday and played really well from start to finish,” said Grainger. “We dominated the early part of the game and although they pushed us back once they got in to it we were solid
“Although they had lots of possession in the second half they didn’t do much with it.”
“There was a big heated discussion in the changing room at half-time after the sending off, which now having seen it again was the correct decision, the boys all said they will win it and they did just that.”
Although the two goals were decisive in Town getting the three points Grainger also feels that other factors made a large contribution to the victory.
“The second half we played brilliantly, we kept our shape and defended so well,” he said. “It was Adam Dalby’s first game in nine weeks and he slotted straight in next to Darren Coe, Mark Webster and Paul Betson.
“The other thing that helped us win was that our fitness levels on the day were better than theirs.”
The only other fixture in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division concerning teams in the region at the weekend fell victim to the weather as Ely City’s home clash with Godmanchester Rovers was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.
The Robins will be back in action tomorrow night when visiting Thetford Town (7.45pm).
Like the Robins Mildenhall Town will also be on their travels in their next fixture when taking on FC Clacton on Saturday (3pm).
A last-gasp Luke Stanley header saw Soham Town Rangers snatch a 3-2 away at Wroxham on Friday.
Rangers stormed into a two-goal lead inside the opening 45 minutes through efforts from Dan Brown and Joey Abbs, before second-half goals from Andy Howell and Remy Gordon levelled the match.
Just as looked like the points were to be shared up popped Stanley in the 91st minute to hand Rangers a third successive win.
Rangers will host Dereham Town at home today (3pm), before facing two away trips at Redbridge on Saturday (3pm) and AFC Sudbury on Tuesday (7.45pm).