Rovers looking to bounce back

Rovers looking to maintain momentum

Despite a defeat at leaders Brimscombe & Thrupp on Tuesday evening, bringing to an end their six match unbeaten run in the league, Tuffley Rovers came away from the contest in good spirits, after more than matching their high-flying hosts to the extent that they received considerable praise from the opposition manager, Sam Prior.

However, the absence of points left Rovers’ boss, Mark Pritchett, frustrated, with his squad immersed in a battle to climb away from the relegation places in the Uhlsport Hellenic League, Premier Division.

“I was left with a sense of frustration by the result on Tuesday night but I was really pleased with the performance and the level of effort we put into the game”, Pritchett reflected. “We more than held our own against the league leaders, but a couple of lapses in concentration in the early stages of the second-half has cost us.”

Tuesday’s outing saw a debut for Ross Langworthy, signed on a dual registration basis from Southern League Yate Town, which added strength to Pritchett’s squad, although he will return to his parent club this weekend, at a time when Pritchett has lost a few players to injuries or work commitments.

“Brett James will be out for a few weeks, after he picked up a shoulder injury at Ascot, and Sam Hill injured his groin against Ardley United”, he confirmed. “We lost Will Dawes and Tyreece Briscoe in midweek, due to commitments they had with Cheltenham Town, and Jack Phillips has been missing for a while now, due to work commitments.”

In addition, recent signing Adam Bloomfield may be unavailable this weekend – due to County FA commitments – but despite all these issues, Pritchett believes his side can continue their good form and translate that into valuable league points, starting at second place Wantage Town on Saturday, with third place Bishops Cleeve visiting Glevum Park seven days’ later; not to mention a midweek fixture at Glevum Park against Lydney Town, sandwiched in-between, on Tuesday evening.

“Brimscombe dug deep on Tuesday and showed why they’re top of this league, but we matched them for much of the game”, he added. “We’ve got games coming thick and fast, none of them easy, but we’ll look to go again and continue the good form we’ve shown since the turn of the year.”

Dawes and Briscoe should be available for the visit to Wantage Town, whilst Hill is recovering well and if he doesn’t make Saturday’s game might well be fit to return to action for Tuesday evening’s fixture, as Rovers look to accumulate the points need to secure their place in the league, potentially affecting the title challengers fortunes in the process.