ROB HOPKINS is hoping that he can welcome boss Mark Teasdale back to the New College dugout having secured some cup progress for the student side.
Hopkins stepped down as College chief in March due to his work commitments, taking over the running of the club’s U18 side, but has found himself back in the managerial hotseat in recent weeks.
With Teasdale away on holiday and assistant Matt Cosnett currently waylaid following surgery, Hopkins is set to take charge of College’s Floodlit Cup clash with Burnham Reserves on Wednesday and next weekend’s FA Vase meeting with Fleet Spurs.
“The U18 league hasn’t started yet, so they needed me to come in and look after the team whilst Mark was away getting a sun tan,” said Hopkins.
“We’ve got some important cup games coming up and I’m going to be in charge for those, so hopefully I can welcome back Mark and tell him that we’ve had some good results and performances – he comes back halfway through the FA Vase match and I imagine that he’ll pop along during it.
“We were in the FA Vase for the first time last year and I think it was a bit of a shock to us but we know what to expect this time around.”
College suffered a 3-1 defeat at Tuffley Rovers in the Hellenic League Division One West last Saturday, despite Christy Millar giving the visitors an early lead.
Alex Baker was sent off for bringing down an opponent in the area, with Rovers netting the equaliser from the penalty spot, which put the hosts on their way to taking all three points.
But Hopkins was delighted with his youngsters’ second half efforts with ten men.
“Unfortunately, Alex’s sending off was a red card. They scored the penalty, then got two more before half-time,” he said.
“But after that, the players worked their proverbial socks off. They ran themselves into the ground and the Tuffley management said to us after the game that they couldn’t believe that we’d done that with ten men.
“Hopefully the lads can take heart from that and take it into the next game.”
Elsewhere Justin Miller’s Purton side could only manage a 0-0 with Hook Norton in their Hellenic League Division One West encounter at the Red House.
The visitors’ Sam Grant and Josh Rose both went close to opening the scoring whilst visiting keeper Kurt Fox also pulled off a fine save to deny Justin Miller’s men.