Horndean eye Stockford return for derby

Ben Wright is in good scoring form. Picture: Keith Woodland

‘All or nothing’ as Gosport get set for Dunstable trip

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HORNDEAN hope to have ‘Tough Mudder’ Lewis Stockford back for tonight’s Wessex premier derby against AFC Portchester at Wicor Rec (7.45pm).

The influential midfielder missed the 3-2 FA Cup win at Corsham last Saturday because he was taking part in the legendary endurance event.

He was part of a team that tackled the 12-mile military-style obstacle course at Cirencester.

Horndean manager Dave Carter is waiting to see if his key player has recovered.

‘A couple of the girls from their team are in bits after doing the course,’ said Carter.

‘I will have to see what sort of shape Lewis is in but I am hoping he will be okay.

‘He has been a revelation for us, and what he is doing playing at our level I don’t know.

‘His energy is superb and ability on the ball is second to none.’

Stockford moved to Five Heads Park from AFC Portchester for the first half of last season but work commitments mean he cannot play every weekend.

Carter will be without striker Nathan Kirby because of a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ with the hosts.

A seven-day approach was waived when Kirby moved to Horndean from Portchester and the agreement was part of the deal.

Unbeaten Horndean do have Gav Spurway and Jack Warren back in contention in their midfield.

‘Everyone at the club is buzzing with our winning start,’ said Carter.

Meanwhile Portchester manager Graham Rix is plagued by injuries ahead of what he expects to be a tough local derby.

‘We still have a number of players missing,’ said Rix.

‘Our start has been a bit up and down because of this.

‘We had a good FA Cup win over Fawley and must look to build on that.’

The home side are without injured pair John Webb and Danny Audin, while Joe Bye is still suspended.

Elsewhere, Fareham Town manager Matt Parr faces a selection headache against Totton & Eling at Cams Alders (7.45pm).

Several youngsters did well in the FA Cup win at Romsey but the senior players are ready to return so Parr must decide who to go with.