Paul Doswell's delivery message to Hawks as heat intensifies in pursuit of clinching National League South play-off place

Paul Doswell assessed Hawks' race to win a National League South play-off place and offered a simple message to his players: It's time to deliver now.
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Braintree provide the opposition at Westleigh Park on Saturday as 11th-placed Hawks begin their final seven-game run-in sitting just three points off the division's top-seven positions.

On the back of the thumping 4-0 defeat at table-toppers Maidstone United last time out, Doswell believes this weekend's league clash will be his side's 'biggest game of the season'.

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While the Hawks boss reckons securing 15 points from their remaining seven matches should be enough to ensure they come out on top in what looks likely to be up to a five-team race between themselves, seventh-placed Hungerford, Dulwich Hamlet, Chippenham and St Albans to get into the play-offs.

Guy Hollis is a doubt to feature for Hawks against Braintree after coming down with illness this week Picture: Dave HainesGuy Hollis is a doubt to feature for Hawks against Braintree after coming down with illness this week Picture: Dave Haines
Guy Hollis is a doubt to feature for Hawks against Braintree after coming down with illness this week Picture: Dave Haines

Doswell said: ‘It's probably the biggest game of the season, for me (against Braintree). I think if we get a win on Saturday, we're in a great place, that will put us very close - maybe level, we could be away (off the play-offs). I think we have to win on Saturday.

‘We've probably got to win at least three of our remaining four home games and win one of the away games to get in there (the play-offs). I think that would get you in there (five wins from seven).

‘I keep saying, wherever you finish is where you deserve to finish, that's regardless of injuries and other bits which have happened this year.

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‘I think Saturday is probably the biggest game of the season. That's what we've been saying to the players, the players know it, we know it - it's time to deliver, simple as that.’

But rather than be bogged down by the pressures of the season-ending play-off pursuit, Doswell says his troops should be embracing the challenge.

He added: ‘This is something you actually should enjoy as a player. You should want to play in these games and there is no doubt that this is a big game and one that any player worth his salt should want to be involved in.’

Defender Guy Hollis remains a doubt to play a part against Braintree having come down with illness this week, while midfielder Oscar Gobern is continuing to struggle with his recovery from a broken toe.