Deans aim to avoid Verwood sucker-punch

Horndean manager Dave Carter. Picture: Paul Jacobs (123433-8)
Horndean manager Dave Carter. Picture: Paul Jacobs (123433-8)
Richard Pacquette and Rocky Baptiste (right) celebrate with the Hawks fans after the win against Swansea

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Horndean are hoping to make it third time lucky as they entertain Verwood Town in the Wessex League premier division at Five Heads Park (3pm).

The New Forest side have already beaten the Deans twice this season – in league and cup clashes.

‘They were both games we could and should have won,’ insisted boss Dave Carter.

‘We had lots of possession but failed to put the ball in their net.

‘In the end they hit us on the counter-attack and we will need to be alert to that again.’

The home side will be without Tommy Woodward, who suffered a broken leg at Whitchurch over Christmas.

He is now home from hospital after having surgery to have a rod inserted between his knee and ankle.

‘Tommy is in good spirits and, although he is likely to be out for at least a year, is determined to play again,’ said Carter.

With Danny Martin coming out of his short-lived retirement and newcomers Liam Bradbury and Kev Pottage in the frame, Horndean have plenty of options to plug the gap.

Elsewhere, Fareham Town are desperate to beat the weather and host Lymington Town at Cams Alders (3pm).

A 9.30am inspection has been organised for tomorrow.

‘We have only played twice in December and have a lot of catching up to do,’ said Reds boss Matt Parr.

‘It doesn’t look too good this weekend, either, because our pitch is still flooded.

‘We have got a good squad to go to war with and that will be needed because we will be playing twice a week for a while.’

AFC Portchester are aiming to push on by beating relegation-battling Fawley on the Waterside (3pm).

‘It is time for us to kick on and see where it takes us,’ said first-team coach Louie Bell.

‘We have done well so far but that means we have become a bit of a scalp.

‘That means we have to be on our mettle at all times.’

Nathan Lynch scored a hat-trick last week on his debut and will fancy his chances of adding to that tally.

Moneyfields visit lowly Downton (3pm).