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Bourne Town beaten in friendly clashes with Grantham Town and Spalding United

Bourne boss Rob Middleton believes his side are heading in the right direction after two promising pre-season displays against higher level opposition.

The Wakes went down to a narrow 2-1 home defeat on Wednesday night against BetVictor South East side Spalding United who play two levels above Bourne.

That followed the 7-0 reversal against BetVictor Northern Premier Division side Grantham Town on Saturday after the Gingerbreads scored six goals in the final 35 minutes of the South Kesteven Charity Cup third-place play-off.

Bourne boss Rob Middleton. (14273490)
Bourne boss Rob Middleton. (14273490)

Middleton said: "We are showing some real positive signs that it is coming together. We are getting where we want to be.

"It was a good game against Spalding on Wednesday night and you're always going to be fairly happy to only lose by the odd goal against a side who play two levels above.

"Grantham had a lot of class about them on Saturday, but it was only 1-0 at half-time and we decided to push bodies on in the second half.

"We went three at the back and gave it a go. We did push them back for the first 15 minutes or so, had a goal disallowed and their keeper made a good save.

"We tried to be brave, but they then went to a 4-3-3 and had three quick, technical forwards and they played some awesome football.

"We set up for another hard game against Spalding and expected to be without the ball for a lot of the time.

"We had a few new faces who we were looking at and who were looking at us and Spalding were pretty relentless in the first 25 minutes.

"But we really dug deep, kept our shape well and our concentration. Although they were 2-0 up at half-time, we hadn't played badly.

"We put an extra body in midfield for the second half because of the personnel we wanted to look at and we got a foothold in the game.

"We were probably the better side for 15 or 20 minutes of the second half which was good considering the level they're at."

Tom Cardall netted for the Wakes against Spalding United. (14273411)
Tom Cardall netted for the Wakes against Spalding United. (14273411)

George Zuerner and Jamie Jackson were on target for the Tulips in the opening period with Tom Cardall netting for the Wakes after the break with a good finish following a strong surge down the left.

The Wakes continue their pre-season programme on Saturday with a trip to Peterborough League Premier Division side Peterborough North End Sports (2pm).

Blackstones were impressive 5-0 home winners over United Counties League Premier Division side Oadby Town on Wednesday night.

Lewis Morley gave Stones the lead after converting a Matt Simpson header from close range before Josh Edmondson doubled the advantage with a classy chip over the advancing Oadby goalkeeper.

Joe Moore-Papworth volleyed home the third before two goals in the final seven minutes from joint player-boss Lee Clarke and Ben Cowles sealed their success.

Stones are next in action on Wednesday night when they travel to face St Neots Reserves.

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