Exmouth Town assistant manager speaks about the Brislington challenge

PUBLISHED: 18:33 25 October 2019


Exmouth Town are seeking a ninth successive victory at ‘Fortress Southern Road’ when they entertain Brislington in the Toolstation League Premier Division (3pm).

Town assistant boss Andy Rawlings, speaking ahead of the game, said: "We have of course, already met them [Brislington] when we beat them in an FA Vase tie that we won 3-2. The game was not as close as the score would suggest for they did net their second goal right at the end of the contest. That said, since the Vase tie they have had some impressive results and so this is a game we need to be ready and certainly focused. Having won all our eight home games so far this season we have a home record that is obviously second to none and it's a record the lads can be very proud of having. However, such a run also brings with it added pressure for I don't doubt Brislington will be looking at it and thinking of the headline they could write by becoming the team that ends our winning home run."

Looking back to the Wednesday night win over Tavistock; the 4-2 win becoming the eighth successive Southern Road success in all competitions this season, the Town number two said: "Shipping the goal as we did so late in the first half - and a 45 minutes by the way that we were the better side - we had the lads in at the break thinking they might be of the mind set of 'here we go again' given the defeat at Keynsham Town and then the late first half blow, but the lads were so positive and even when we fell behind so quickly after Ace [High] had levelled things up, you could see the belief and the resolve of the players come through to make sure that they stepped up to get us straight back on the winning trail. That whole 90 minutes on Wednesday night was very good indeed and against a really good side too it must be said. Tavistock are a tidy team and are going to do well at this level."

He continued: "I must make special mention from Wednesday night of Karl [Rickard]. He had been unavailable to us at Keynsham owing to a suspension for accumulative bookings and back in on Wednesday he was so influential ratting around and getting us the ball back when it was lost."

Town did pick up an injury in the midweek win over Tavistock with full back Kieran Willdig suffering a torn hamstring. The injury came just as Town fell behind for the second time on the night with Chris Wright beaten from the penalty spot.

Andy Rawlings says: "The strength of the squad came to the fore with Kieran's injury for Avers [Steve Avery] seamlessly slotted into the position and I told him after the game that he had played a huge part in the win. We can see now why Kevin [Town boss Kevin Hill] was so keen to make sure we had a big squad to work with this season. It's something all ambitious clubs have to have and, as we saw with the Kieran injury, if you have quality cover all across the pitch it means you can cope with the loss of a talented player as we are able to do in this situation."

Finally, back to the Saturday game; the Town number two said: "It's a game we can certainly look forward to. If we play to our potential then I am confident those wonderful supporters will have a smile on their face at full-time. One thing is for sure, the atmosphere at Southern Road on and off the pitch will again be special. The Town supporters really are special - there were almost 200 there again in midweek and their support, which is so appreciated by us all, players and management, really does make a big difference."

The Journal's Sam Cooper will be at the game and so, if you cannot make it along to Southern Road then stay with us here from 3pm for a blow-by-blow account of the action.

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