Richards takes a break and leaves Town looking to replace the talented defender

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 - Credit: Archant

Exmouth Town assistant manager Andy Rawlings was pleased with what the team produced in a well contested pre-season friendly with Saltash United.

Town and the Cornish side drew 0-0 before nearly 100 at Southern Road and the Town number two said: “It was an excellent work out and between two well matched teams.

“Once again we rang the changes as we continue to look at one or two things.

“On the plus side we kept a clean sheet, but the negative to take from the game is that we failed to score.”

In terms of player news, James Richards has announced that he is taking a year out of the game.

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The Town number two says: “It’s a combination of things with James. He is a father now and also has increased work commitments. It’s a blow for sure as he has been a consistent and talented performer for us.”

The loss of Richards has been slightly offset by the emergence of a couple of new players this season.

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Rawlings explained saying: “Both Alfie Mahon and Dan Cullen have featured prominently in pre-season games and I fancy both will play big parts in the coming season.”

Town also have injury concerns over goalkeeper Robbie Powell. Chris Wright kept goal against Saltash.

Rawlings says: “Chris did very well against the Ashes. Robbie is struggling and so it’s really good for us as a club that we now have two top class goalkeepers on the books. Hopefully, Robbie will be back for the FA Cup tie, but if he is not fit then we have a fit again ‘Wrighty’ to do the job for us.”

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