HELLENIC LEAGUE: Turner relishing Bassett return
SHRIVENHAM manager Dave Turner is relishing the prospect of taking on former club Wootton Bassett in a mouthwatering Hellenic Premier clash tomorrow.
Turner departed Bassett after five years at the helm in the summer and has since taken up the reins at Barrington Park, where after a slow start the team have kicked into gear.
And the boss cannot wait to pit his wits against successor Jeff Roberts at the Corinium as both sides look to build on positive bank holiday weekend results.
“It was the first game I Iooked for when the fixtures came out,” said Turner.
“It’s always good to go back to your old club, although it will be strange as well as I had some good times there. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to win this one because it is a special game.
“I’ve got no bad feelings towards Bassett, I was hurt at the time I left but that’s water under the bridge now. I’d love to win any game I take part in, so from that point of view it’s no different.
“In a way I’ll be glad to get it out the way because derbies don’t tend to be pretty games. Once it’s out of the way and the hype is over, we can focus on picking up points elsewhere in the league.”
Turner has completed the loan signing of Swindon Supermarine’s Josh Fowler - who had been subject to interest from Highworth - and the striker will be available this weekend.
“I’ve been speaking to him for a while and he’s a superb little player, so it’s a big signing for us,” said Turner.
“He’s a young man who wants to play at the highest level he can, but he wants to play.”
Shrivenham have no new injury worries for tomorrow’s fixture, but Bassett boss Jeff Roberts has a number of concerns on his mind.
Shaun Terry has a one-match suspension following his dismissal against Highworth, while fellow front man Levi Cox is out.
Right-sided player Kyle Rigley has a sprained ankle and there will be late fitness tests for Jordan Roberts and Tyler Sheppard, but Lee Stevens is available again.
“It will be a big game for the Bassett players who have stayed,” said Roberts, who was yesterday poised to make a seven-day approach for a striker.
“Dave (Turner) had his issues at the time he left, so I’m sure he’s going to have a point to prove.
“They have won their last two and we picked up four points over the bank holiday weekend, so it should be a good game.”
Keeper Steve Allison might have no experience of a Bassett local derby, but he is fairly confident of what to expect.
“The big derby when I was at Calne was against Corsham and they are always the same, form goes out of the window and it’s about who’s up for it,” said Allison.
“Even as a keeper you get much more hustle and bustle in a derby game, but if you can give a bit back then it’s not too bad.
“Most of the lads played under the previous manager and we’re all looking forward to it.”
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