Axminster Town joint-boss on draw with Elburton and the season so far
PUBLISHED: 19:37 03 December 2019 | UPDATED: 19:56 03 December 2019
Axminster Town battled their way a to a deserving share of the spoils when they drew their home South West Peninsula League Premier East meeting with Elburton Villa 1-1.
Trailing at the break, the Tigers levelled with a second half penalty from Richard Hebditch and went on to dominate the second half despite playing the final half hour with 10 men following a red card for the unfortunate Mark Scott.
Scott was shown red after an exaggerated reaction from a visiting player to a 'disagreement' and Tigers joint-boss John Hurford had every sympathy for his player saying: "Mark [Scott] was unlucky and had the movement not been so outrageously over emphasised by the opposition player I am fairly sure it would have been a yellow - at worst."
Hurford continued: "Mark has been playing very well this season and we will miss his considerable presence now as a result of his suspension."
Hurford is himself out until the New Year with a hip injury, but there's encouraging news about another Town player who is set to return to the fold after doing some world travel.
Hurford explained saying: "Cameron Vere is set to return any day now from his travels and he will come straight in, hopefully as a replacement for the suspended Mark. Cameron is a talent and we will be a better team for his presence."
The Town joint manager also had high praise for goalkeeper Luke De Matos who had only come training with the club the week before, but made an impressive debut between then posts on Saturday.
Hurford said: "Luke pitched up at our midweek training session and indicated he would like to join us and as we were struggling for a glovesman on Saturday we gave him his chance and, to be fair, he delivered the sort of performance that gives Josh [fellow joint boss Josh Stunell] and I food for thought and we have what all manager and coaches want which is added competition for places."
That was not the end of the plaudits from Hurford who added: "Our Man of the Match was undoubtedly Gary Spiller who was playing for the first time since the Elmore game back in early October and he really looked the part."
There is one player who, as far as Hurford is concerned is a key figure is Glen Gould of whom he says: "Glen [Gould] is a key figure. His quality is there for all to see and he brings so much to us. To date this season he has certainly been the 'main man' and I have no doubt he will continue to play that role as we go forward."
To the question of: "How do you see the campaign to date an what are your thoughts about the way forward over the remainder of the season, the Tigers; joint boss replied: "We are keen to keep the club moving forward. This is out first season at this level and the priority is consolidation and making sure we are at the same level next year. It's been a learning curve so far for us all and, as we have shown in many games, we are not far off the standard and certainly have nothing to fear at this level. We are going to collectively keep working hard and I am sure that hard work, combined with the undoubted talent we have in the squad, will see us OK."
On Saturday (December 7) the Tigers head for Plymouth and a meeting with Marjons on the all-weather surface that is home to the University side.