Hawks hope to seize chance against Oxford

LEE BRADBURY is keen for the Hawks to ensure they can maintain momentum as they host Oxford City at Westleigh Park in the Vanarama National League South on Tuesday (7.45pm).

Monday, 8th January 2018, 7:09 pm
Updated Monday, 8th January 2018, 7:23 pm
Mike Carter

Bradbury was frustrated to lose the home game against Wealdstone on Saturday because of a waterlogged pitch.

He believes the dry weather since then will enable them to get the pitch playable again.

The home side also have the added incentive of knowing a win could take them back level on points at the top with a game in hand.

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Bradbury insists it is vital the Hawks get in action again, they don’t want to slip behind in matches and for the season to become disjointed.

‘We need to be playing because we are on a good run and have good momentum,’ said the manager.

‘It is much better to get points on the board than have games in hand.

‘Games can mount up and we have seen that cost us in the past.

‘That is something we don’t want to happen again.

‘We had a good Christmas period, picking up seven points from a possible nine.

‘Now we have the chance to go joint-top and must look to make the most of it.’

One positive from the postponed game at the weekend is that midfielder has had Mike Carter more time to recover from injury.

The combative player is ready to return and that will give the Hawks a more solid look in that area.

Bradbury added: ‘Having Mike Carter available again gives us added steel in midfield. He’s very dogged, hard working, committed and horrible to play against.

‘I think his reputation sometimes goes before him and he picks up bookings other players wouldn’t get.

‘His return gives us plenty of options in that area.

‘Theo Lewis had one of his best games at Bognor and Brian Stock showed his experience when he went on in the second half.’

Alfie Rutherford is back from injury for the Hawks. The young striker has returned to training and looked lively.

‘Being young Alfie has recovered quickly, coming back from an eight week injury in five weeks,’ added Bradbury.

Rory Williams is ruled out by suspension and wide attacker George Barker has left the club by mutual consent.

One player the home side will know all about in the Oxford City ranks is Matt Paterson.

He has scored against Colchester and Notts County in the FA Cup this season, while he netted on Saturday in Oxford City’s 2-1 win at Hungerford Town. He might feel he has a point to prove against the club who let him go.

Hawks: Young, Woodford, Harris, Rose, Tuttle, Lewis, Fogden, Carter, Stock, Robinson, Tarbuck, Prior, Tubbs, Molyneux, Hayter, Rutherford