LES JONES describes Pershore Town’s clash with title favourites Tividale on Saturday as a ‘free hit’ before they face two crunch games which could define their season.
Second-from-bottom Pershore closed to within one point of safety in the West Midlands League Premier Division after securing a 3-1 win at AFC Bridgnorth – their first victory on their travels since Jones and Derek Doyle took over in October.
It will give Town a boost of confidence to face table-toppers Tividale at the Community Stadium on Saturday but more importantly it got rid of the away-day jinx before they face relegation rivals Dudley Sports and Wem Town in successive away fixtures.
After two goals from Matt Pinder and one from Nick Seabourne accounted for Bridgnorth, Pershore, Wem and Sports are now separated by one point, ALthough Pershore have played more games.
“To go to Bridgnorth and come away with the win has given everybody a real buzz,” said Jones. “We got that monkey off our backs with our first away win.
“Bridgnorth are tenth in the table and they are so strong at home with the slope on their pitch and even the top sides struggle to win there.
“With the way the results went, it has closed things up and it has set it up for the Dudley and Wem games. We’ve got Tividale first which will be a really tough fixture but it’s a free hit for us really.
“They are one of the top teams in the league and they will be expected to beat us, but the next few games are going to be crucial.”
Bridgnorth made the most of the slope on their Crown Meadow pitch last weekend when they took a half-time lead but Seabourne levelled and Pinder added two more to take the points.
“It was a well deserved win in the end,” said Jones. “In the first half, they had the pitch and the wind in their favour but once we got our first goal the floodgates opened and it was a comfortable win.”
Pershore hope striker Seabourne’s influence will continue. He has returned from Southern League Division One Central outfit Coleshill Town to get games under his belt after recovering from injury and is expected to face Tividale.
“We’re hoping Nick will be with us for a while longer,” said Jones. “He is coming back from injury and hasn’t played much football at Coleshill so it’s helping everyone if he can play for us.”
Andy Pawson and Jamie Smith are both doubts to face Tividale but Pershore were able to welcome back Chris Goode after injury when he played 90 minutes in a friendly against Sunday side New Inn Pershore on Tuesday.
Jones’ side won 6-2, with the manager using the contest to have a look at three trialists among a mix-and-match side. Pinder netted twice, with Ameer Khan, Joel Hobbs and Sam Clark among the goals.