Opening friendly for Bourne who make trip to face Pinchbeck
Bourne boss Rob Middleton is hoping his side's early start to pre-season will provide perfect preparation for their opening friendly tonight (Friday).
The Wakes make the trip to face United Counties League Premier Division side Pinchbeck United this evening having been back in training since the start of June.
That's four weeks ahead of many sides who only started back this month with Middleton now eager for his side to get their first taste of match action at Knight Street (7pm kick-off).
He said: "Numbers have been fantastic at training. We started early because we wanted to get the players' fitness levels up.
"Our fitness levels have advanced from last year and we just need to start games now and get moving the ball about.
"It's not about the results in pre-season, but you are looking for a performance from your players to give you a bit of belief about how things are going to go this year."
The Pinchbeck friendly is followed next weekend by Bourne's first outing in the new South Kesteven Charity Cup.
The Wakes will host a Lincoln City Academy side in the semi-final clash at the JJ Mac Stadium on Saturday, July 13.
The winners will face either Harrowby United or Grantham Town in the final with the beaten semi-finalists meeting in a play-off for third and fourth place.
Middleton added: "The Pinchbeck game is a chance for us to have a blow-out and then it's time to knuckle down.
"We've got to give it a go against a side who are a level above. Hopefully it will give us a few more answers to our questions.
"The Lincoln match then gives us the potential to play in a final and hopefully we'll also get a good crowd for what will be a good test against the Academy players of a League One club. We will be wanting to put on a good show."
Bourne had hoped to get their first match under their belts last Friday when they had arranged to face Hykeham Town in a friendly.
However, Lincolnshire FA rules do not allow matches to be played in June which forced the postponement.
Bourne had an inter-club run-out on Wednesday night and Middleton was impressed with the young players coming through the ranks at the JJ Mac Stadium.
He said: "There are a lot of lads coming through and they are really starting to close the gap down on the first team.
"The strength in depth is really showing through. We are looking quite healthy and need to keep the conveyor belt going through the club.
"You are always looking to sprinkle a bit of gold dust about in terms of players for the first team, but that's not always possible when you're a non-budget club."