Kevin Grainger is hoping his Newmarket Town team has emerged from the other side of a ‘frustrating period’ following Saturday’s 5-1 victory at Histon, writes Liam Apicella.
The Jockeys made the trip down the A14 in poor form, having recorded only two victories from their previous 11 outings in all competitions.
But they bounced back in style at the Glassworld Stadium, where they took advantage of an early red card for the hosts with goals coming from Lewis Whitehead (2), Austen Diaper (2) and Stephen Spriggs.
It was a first win since November 7 for Newmarket, who fired in the same amount of goals during the 90 minutes as they had managed in their five preceding fixtures.
“It has been a frustrating period so I am really pleased with the result and the performance,” said Grainger.
“It helped they went down to 10 men early on, but that does not always make it easy because they sit back and it can be difficult to break teams down.
“We made the pitch big and took our chances when they came about — we had been lacking that clinical touch in recent weeks.
“Fair play to Histon because they made it difficult for us in the second half, but once they ran out of steam we finished it off well.”
However, the commanding victory came at a price as captain Jack Watson was forced off with a nasty cut to his leg that required hospital treatment.
The injury is expected to sideline the midfielder for at least two weeks, while Nick Wilderspin (knee) and Jordan Lambert (unavailable) will also miss Saturday’s home game against Stanway Rovers (3pm).
On a more positive note, though, Grainger will have Buster Harradine at his disposal after the experienced midfielder joined Newmarket on a dual registration deal from higher-league Cambridge City.
Harradine, who has previously turned out for Soham Town Rangers, featured for Newmarket at Histon and Grainger said of the new arrival: “He played very well on Saturday.
“He is one of those players that can be trusted to get the job done.
“He gets stuck in and rarely wastes possession.
“We are going to miss Jack’s influence, but Buster will give us plenty of experience in the middle.”