Honiton Town boss happy with pre-season as Hippos prepare to launch league campaign at Elmore

PUBLISHED: 15:16 31 July 2018 | UPDATED: 15:16 31 July 2018

Ref mhsp 14 17TI 0219. Picture: Terry Ife

Ref mhsp 14 17TI 0219. Picture: Terry Ife

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Honiton Town manager Kev Blackwell is delighted with how the Hippos’ pre-season is shaping up.

In terms of the action Town won 1-0 on the artificial surface that is home to Exwick Villa where a goal from Chris Long gave the Hippos a 1-0 win over Clyst Valley and then, last Saturday they shared four goals with hosts Beer Albion.

The Town boss says: “It’s always a difficult time of year with regard to retaining players from the previous campaign and bringing in new players – or getting them to commit – factor in sorting friendlies which need to be played away from home (Mountbatten Park is still in the grip of the cricket season which means Town must play pre-season matches away), and it’s a busy time as well.”

He continued: “However, as busy as it has been what it has shown me is that the committee at the football club are as supportive as they ever were and that is such a great help.

“In terms of our warm-up games, each one has thrown up new challenges which we have the asked the lads to rise too – and they have! What has been important this preseason is building up the squad, over the year we will need to utilise our squad to our fullest and we have tried to get that message across and get the players to buy into our thinking.

“We have so many games, and what with injury, suspensions, work and family commitments we need every player available and ready slot into the team to play in the style and system that we want the lads to play.”

As for the fact that Town will not now start their league campaign as they had hoped – their opening day opponents Galmpton have withdrawn from the league, the Town boss says: “It’s a real shame that Galmpton have pulled out and it does mean that our first game of the new campaign will now be a Wednesday (August 15) when we go to Elmore and so I doubt we will face tougher league opposition all season than in our very first game!

“We will have to get hit the ground running, but with two friendlies left we will prepare the lads as much as possible to be ready for the match and the season.”

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