Horndean’s deadly duo battling for supremacy

Gary Austin, left, has been banging in the goals for the Deans
Gary Austin, left, has been banging in the goals for the Deans
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Dave Carter is hoping the fierce rivalry between his two strikers Gary Austin and Nathan Paxton can fire Horndean to a top-eight finish in the Wessex League premier division.

The two strikers have notched 51 goals between them already this season and are determined to out-score each other.

Austin, with 26 goals to his name, currently has one more than Paxton.

They will be hoping to add to their tally when the Deans host Fawley tomorrow at Five Heads Park (3pm).

‘Both my strikers are banging in the goals at the moment and there is a bit of banter flying around,’ said Carter.

‘We have won five games on the bounce and are looking to keep that run going.

‘There are six teams in our league paying big money so if we can finish top of the next group then I will be happy.

‘It is going to be a hectic end to the season, though, because we still have 11 games left to play.’

Horndean lost 1-0 at Fawley earlier in the season and know they face a physical challenge.

Carter believes his team will have to match the Oilmen physically.

The home side, however, are battling injury, suspension and unavailability.

Robbie Pittman is suspended, Dan Ayres and Ashley Harris are injured and Lewis Stockford is unavailable.

Fareham Town continue their great escape bid against fellow strugglers Verwood Town at Cams Alders (3pm).

A win could haul the Reds out of the bottom two.

Matt Parr’s side are one point behind closest rivals Christchurch, with a game in hand.

‘We must look to try to get something from all our games now,’ said the boss.

‘The mood in the camp is still good and we believe we can stay up.

‘It is in our own hands and we must look to make the most of that.

‘The work-rate and commitment is tremendous and hopefully we will get our reward by staying up.’

Fourth-placed AFC Portchester visit Alresford Town (3pm).