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Stamford host Stocksbridge Park Steels in BetVictor Northern Premier League clash

Stamford will be aiming to continue their storming season while taking the wind out of the sails of one of their promotion rivals when they return to BetVictor Northern Premier League action on Saturday.

The Daniels – who currently occupy second spot in the South East Division – host fifth-placed Stocksbridge Park Steels at the Zeeco Stadium (kick-off 3pm).

The Yorkshire side are unbeaten in their last seven league games after taking a 17-point haul from a run which has moved them into the final play-off place.

Manager Graham Drury. Photo: Tim Wilson (29038858)
Manager Graham Drury. Photo: Tim Wilson (29038858)

And, with Storm Dennis set to hit the area over the weekend, Stamford manager Graham Drury feels the unpredictable weather could favour the visitors.

But, after defying gale-force conditions in several games this season – including both victories over third-placed Cleethorpes – Drury is confident his side will rise to the challenge.

He said: “The elements might suit their style of play more than ours, but we have just got to get on and deal with it.

"We dealt with it against Cleethorpes and we need to do the same again.

"We need to keep our distance in second spot and keep pushing Leek for the top place.

"We did well against Cleethorpes and showed that we're in it for the long haul.

"I challenged the boys before that game because February is the biggest month of the season for us.

"We get all sorts of weather conditions with the wind, rain and snow and the pitches are often difficult so we've got to dig in and show our character.

Sean Wright's 85th minute equaliser earned Stamford a point in their 1-1 draw at Stocksbridge in September. Photo: Dan Allen (29038523)
Sean Wright's 85th minute equaliser earned Stamford a point in their 1-1 draw at Stocksbridge in September. Photo: Dan Allen (29038523)

"We've got a run of games where we are going to have to show that side of our game.

"We've got the chance of getting a fantastic return though and we'll be trying to do that as much as we can.”

Stamford will have a full-strength squad to choose from with striker James Hicks back in contention after missing the last two games.

With the Daniels not having a match last weekend, Harry Limb (Boston Town), Cleveland Taylor, Pearson Mwanyongo (both Shepshed Dynamo) and Jon Challinor (Yaxley) all got game-time on dual registrations.

The Stamford players also trained last Saturday morning with an already buoyant camp full of high spirits after manager Drury over-slept and was late for the early start time.

He explained: “The mood in the camp is really good. The Bombay Cottage put a fantastic spread on for us last Thursday night and then we trained well on Saturday.

“I obviously got plenty of stick from the players for not being there on time, but it just added to the banter and the togetherness of the camp.

“They know how many hours I put in, going out watching games and identifying the strengths and weaknesses of our opposition and how much homework I do on teams.”

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