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Match preview Vs Grays Athletic

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Date: 22-08-09gif Venue: Recreation Groundgif Kick off: 15:00hrs
One day soon the Harriers will click and our season will take off.  If it happens at Grays tomorrow is another matter.

Our record is not the best in the world with just a draw in our last visit there but three defeats before that.  With a record of only scoring five goals on their patch and them knocking an embarrassing thirteen past us we are well overdue a change in fortunes.

Brian Smikle Even our record at home wasn't too good in the first year that the two sides played each other.  A 1-0 defeat in that seasons FA Trophy was followed up a couple of months later with a terrible 5-0 defeat in the League.

At the start of this present season Grays looked to be in big trouble with a manager waving goodbye through the revolving door and hardly a squad to rub together.  Since then Alan Lewer has come in but then moved upstairs quickly to allow for the return of former manager Gary Phillips.

Between them they have bought in Lee McEvilly from Rochdale, Paul Terry (Yeovil), Adrian Rigoglioso in a surprise move from Forest Green Rovers and Richard Graham (Dagenham) plus quite a few others.

With the new team in place it was then all put on hold after Grays could not play their opening game of the season at home to Chester City due to the well documented fiasco over Chester's right to play in the league and the failure of the FA/Conference to sort out the problem well before the start of the season.  That game will now be played at a later date and Grays have a game in hand.

After our home defeat against Kettering last Tuesday it was obvious that we are lacking in the firepower department.  We had numerous chances to score but spurned them in favour of letting someone else have a go.

In the last ten minutes of the game Robbie Matthews hit the crossbar and Brian Smikle (above, left) saw his header cross the line, scooped from beyond it by a Kettering defender, but not seen by the referee.  The signs were there that we can score goals but we have to be more ruthless in the execution of our chances.

Grays will be without Lee McEvilly for tomorrow's game due to an ongoing shin injury and Paul Terry will be given a late fitness test following an ankle injury picked up against Eastbourne.  For us we should be able to go with the same squad again and just Aaron Farrell will be missing.  It's about time that hamstring got better and it's also about time that John Finnigan started a game.

Unless there is going to be a major sea change to our fortunes at Grays I can't really see any better result than a draw for us.

Photo © KHFC


Teams:

Harriers from:
Coleman, Singh, Baker, Riley, Courtney, Sharp, Finnigan, Knights, Hadley, McDermott, McPhee, Bennett, Hayward, Caines, Costello, Barnes-Homer, Smikle, Dolman, Matthews.

Grays from:
Edwards, Lumley, Beavan, Bryan-Edwards, Harvey, Bull, Hoyte, Mawer, Rigoglioso, Long, Slabber, Graham, Cutler, Taylor, Black, Davis, Crowther, Braham-Barrett, Makofo, Terry, Dos Santos, Charge, Morgan.

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Previous games against Grays Athletic
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