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HELLENIC LEAGUE: Malmesbury are up for the cup
MALMESBURY manager Gareth Davies isn’t planning on mass squad rotation ahead of tonight’s Floodlit Cup first-round clash with New College.
Plenty of Hellenic League managers view the competition as the poorer cousin of the Challenge Cup, but Davies is determined to go as far as possible.
And he says that he will select the best side he can for tonight’s tie at the Flying Monk, with a view to achieving that.
“With it being our first year in charge, if we can go as far as we can in the cup, I think it’s a bonus,” he said.
“We’ll be happy to progress in everything we do. We’re keen and want to do well.
“I haven’t got the luxury of a big squad to choose from and we’ll put out the strongest side that’s available to us.”
Ryan Welland is unavailable this evening while Adie Roper is suspended.
New College boss Rob Hopkins favours squad rotation for tonight’s cup fixture, but feels it may not be an option.
“We might make changes and give some of the younger lads a run-out, but having said that there were under 18s games on Saturday and Monday,” said Hopkins.
“We might go with the same squad and try a few things out and look at a couple of different personnel in different positions.
“But we’ll see what we’ve got personnel-wise before we make a decision on that.
“At least there’s no pressure on it because it’s not a league game.”
The winner of this evening’s game will be rewarded with a home tie against Hellenic Premier high-flyers Wantage or Division One East side Chinnor.
Elsewhere tonight, Highworth host Thame in the Hellenic Premier and stand-in boss Kev Moloney admits he has a selection headache following the weekend.
Although the Worthians lost 3-1 to Camberley in the FA Vase, Moloney was impressed at some of the players he threw into the side, which included midfielders Callum Little and Russell Byrne.
“The lads that came in did quite well and a couple staked a claim and gave me something to think about,” he said.
“Some people were away and others came in and they have all got to be competing for places. It’s a case of coming in and doing a job.”
Matty Bennett, Tony Joyce, Kev Tate and Scott Lane are available again after missing out at the weekend.
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