SOUTHERN LEAGUE: Webb rests players as injury precaution
SWINDON Supermarine boss Dave Webb gave his squad Saturday off as he was concerned that knocks and niggles could start to take their toll.
Webb believes that minor injuries being carried by several players were caused by training on the astroturf at both Swindon Academy and Grange Leisure Centre.
And after Saturday’s fixture at home to Evesham was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch, the manager told his players to have a day of rest.
With a Southern League Division One South & West trip to Clevedon coming up tonight - pitch inspection-permitting - Webb was keen to avoid adding to his injury list.
Experienced defender Kyle Lapham is facing a spell out with a calf injury, while Chris Taylor (thigh), Harry Etheridge (groin) and Mark Flanagan (hamstring) have picked up slight problems.
Webb explained: “The astroturf is a little bit harder on joints, knees, ankles and groins and two or three lads have gone down with injuries as a result of training on it.
“There’s nothing wrong with the surface, it’s just what it is, and obviously there’s no grass we can get on at the club.
“We didn’t do any training on Saturday because the game could go ahead on Monday and I didn’t want to pick up any more injuries.
“The injuries wouldn’t have stopped them playing, but it wouldn’t have been ideal.
“Hopefully the rest will stand the players in good stead for the massive amount of games we have coming up.”
As a result of Saturday’s postponement, Marine’s schedule over the next three months is looking increasingly hectic.
The Webb’s Wood side have played the least games of any team in the division having completed just 22 fixtures, but are still very much in the race for the play-off places.
Webb continued: “We’re going to be busy with so many games coming up. The good thing is that we’re still in a good place but the difficulty is that when we get playing again we need to string results together.
“Mind you, I’d rather we were in the position we were than some other teams.
“We’re still confident but playing that catch-up game is going to be tough. We know in April we’re going to be playing three times a week and we have to get on with it.
“I’m happy with the lads we’ve got, there’s no two ways about it. It’s the other side of it, when you have to prepare yourself physically and mentally to play three times a week and whoever plays has to deliver consistency in every game.
“We aren’t going to win 20 games but there’s every possibility to get as many points as we did last year (81, and Marine currently have 38).
“I think that will be more than enough to get us in the play-offs.”
Clevedon were expected to carry out a pitch inspection this morning.
The Somerset club told the Advertiser on Saturday that their pitch was playable, but subsequent rain may have changed that state of affairs.