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Weymouth Reserves bidding to stop Wincanton in their tracks
WEYMOUTH Reserves could have a big say in the title race this weekend when they host high-flying Wincanton Town on Saturday (3pm).
The Terras have lost just one of their last nine in the Magna Dorset Premier League and having already beaten the likes of Holt United, Hamworthy Recreation and Chickerell United earlier in the campaign, confidence will no doubt be high this weekend.
Joint-boss Jake Richmond told Echosport: “We lost 3-2 at Wincanton on the opening day and afterwards they knew they had been in a game.
“We were actually 2-0 up with 20 minutes left but conceding late goals has been the curse of our season and unfortunately they came back.
“In the main we have competed well against the top sides this year and hopefully it will be no different this Saturday.”
Goalkeeper Jamie Perry is set to return for the Terras along with Lee Sharpe and Ben Doidge but Liam Greatrex is still a couple of weeks away.
Richmond, whose men are four points adrift of the top six in seventh spot, added: “The conditions at Poole Borough last weekend meant we couldn’t really play much football but hopefully on Saturday it will be a bit different and we can put in a good performance.
“The lads were talking about a top-six finish after that victory and the fact they want to strive for that is a good sign, but we will need to put in a good run in order to achieve it.”
Chris Wilson reckons his Portland United side were architects of their own downfall when slipping to a 3-2 defeat at Parley Sports last Saturday.
But Wilson couldn’t be overly critical of his players given that it was just their second loss of the season in the league.
They will look to bounce back this weekend and have home advantage when Tintinhull are the visitors to Grove Corner (3pm).
And the islanders may have beaten their opponents twice already this season but Wilson knows they won’t be any pushovers with someone like Gerry Pearson in charge.
“They are certainly not the easiest of opponents,” he said. “They are a strong and physical side and Gerry will have them well-organised.
“We are expecting a tough game but one that we know we can win with the quality we have in our team.
“We did plenty of good things in the first half against Parley so there is no reason why we can’t put that right.
“We have to take the positives out of every game and I know the players want to bounce back having seen the disappointment on their faces last weekend.”
Adam Linaker, pictured above, and Joe Toghill are unavailable for Portland while Jimmy Dailey is injured but Ashley Weeks is back.
Chickerell United boss Maurice Welch is wary of the threat Blandford United could pose this weekend (3pm).
The Chickens are desperate to beat Hamworthy Recreation and Tintinhull to fourth place but despite currently occupying that position they know they cannot afford any slip-ups.
Speaking ahead of his side’s trip to North Dorset, Welch said: “Blandford are always a tough team to play against, particularly on their own patch, so we will have to be ready to dig in and put in another big display.
“Now we have moved above Hamworthy Rec into fourth it would be nice to stay there with another good result but it will have to be earned.
“The pitches are still very heavy and at the moment you have to show grit and determination above anything else to come out on top – hopefully we can do that again on Saturday.”
Stewart Walbridge has returned to university and will miss out for the Chickens along with Nick Etherington and Liam Beades.
For Bridport Reserves boss Robin Townsend, the postponement of their midweek clash with Swanage Town & Herston was just about the straw that broke the camel’s back.
The Bees host Hamworthy Recreation (3pm) after a month without football with games called off because of the weather, and, on Tuesday, a broken down bus of all things.
Bridport were ready to face Swanage when half an hour before kick-off they were informed their opponents’ transport had failed.
“Everyone at the club was thoroughly disappointed because so much work had gone in to getting the pitch and ground ready,” he said.
“It’s four weeks since we last played and it is really getting the players down. I’ve told them to just act as if the season starts now.
“We’re not going to be as strong on Saturday as we might have been with three players (Gary Bulman, Jamie Fry and Tristan Gale) still suspended.”
Lee Cuff will deputise for Fry between the sticks while Tom Richardson is back in the squad.
Meanwhile, Bridport’s Dorset Senior Trophy semi-final against Milborne Sports has been provisionally rescheduled for March 25 following its postponement last Saturday.