Exmouth Town cup tie at Willand Rovers is postponed

PUBLISHED: 12:25 22 January 2020 | UPDATED: 13:18 22 January 2020

The Exmouth Town flag that can be seen at home and away games. Picture MARTIN COOK

The Exmouth Town flag that can be seen at home and away games. Picture MARTIN COOK

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Town's midweek cup tie at Willand off owing to a frozen pitch in Mid Devon

Exmouth Town were meant to be in cup action tonight (Wednesday), but their Devon St Lukes Bowl Cup tie at Southern League Division One South outfit Willand Rovers has been postponed owing to part of the Silver Street pitch being frozen.

A new date will have to be found in what is already a heavily congested next few months of football for Town - and the army of supporters who follow the team home and away.

Before news of the postponement was confirmed, we had spoken to Town assistant boss Andy Rawlings, first asking him about the sort of strength of team Town woudl play at Willand. He said: "It's a great opportunity for us to call on the wider squad.

"It's probably fair to say that cup competitions do not sit high in terms of our season's targets, but then, as we have seen so far this campaign, the lads have been brilliant in such competitions. We have mixed and matched previously and always got a performance from the team and I'd expect no different tonight. That said, Willand Rovers were the champions of the level we are playing at for the first tim in a long while this season and that speaks volumes for the strength in depth they must have. I don't doubt they have a big squad, even though they don't, these days, run a second team. Silver Street [the Rovers home ground], is a great place to go and play and I am sure that whatever 11 we send out - and the lads who start on the bench - will give us their all and who knows, if Willand are slightly off the pace and we are good enough, then we will get our just rewards, its sure to be a fascinating encounter."

As for who will keep goal tonight for Town, Rawlings says: "That does remain to be seen. I know Kev [Town boss Kevin Hill] has a few 'irons in the fire' and it may well be that we can borrow as we did on Saturday with Macron League Kentisbeare letting us have the services of young Harrison Burton."

While Town were in action last Saturday, winning 3-0 at Chipping Sodbury Town, Rovers were forced to sit out the matchday as their Southern League game at Barnstaple was called off owing to a waterlogged surface in North Devon.

Willand Rovers have played three times since the start of the year. They began with a New Years Day meeting at home to Bideford who they beat 3-2 in front of a Silver Street crowd of 206. Three days later they repeated that score line with a 3-2 win away at Mangotsfield United. However, their most recent league outing was on January 11 when Rovers were beaten 4-0 at Thatcham Town.

Willand Rovers manager Russell Jee is likely to do similar to Kevin Hill with his team as, this coming Saturday, Rovers have a big Southern League South game with second-placed Frome Town and Jee has often been quoted as saying that the league is the clubs priority.

The midweek cancellation means the next Town outing will be Saturday's (Janaury 25) Toolstation League meeting at Southern Road with Bridgwater Town (3pm).

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