BURY Town are set to head into their most difficult spell of the season with an injury crisis that continues to worsen.
Manager Richard Wilkins had just nine senior players to choose from on Tuesday, with many of those playing through the pain barrier to turn out for the Suffolk outfit.
The Blues travel to seventh-placed Cray Wanderers tomorrow (3pm) and host Margate — including 26-goal top scorer Kwesi Appiah — on Tuesday (7.45pm) before a tricky run of games against Canvey Island (ninth), Wingate & Finchley (14th), Lowestoft Town (second), Hendon (sixth) and Billericay Town (first).
“It’s not been ideal,” said Wilkins. “Our physio has been by far the busiest person at the club and we’ve got two coming down to Thursday training at the moment.
“It’s going to be a big month or six weeks for us and will go a long way to seeing where we are. Your position in the table in the second week of January gives you a good indication of that.”
Wayne Brown (calf/illness) and James Scowcroft (groin) remain out until the New Year at least, Jack Cawley and Daryl Coakley are still on loan at Hadleigh and Biggleswade Town respectively, the latter now on a long-term loan.
Roscoe Hipperson (hamstring), Elliot Hunter (knee), John Kennedy (shin), Kieran Leabon (groin) and back-up keeper Richard Robbins (dislocated finger) are set to miss out, while Callum Kearns (knee) may be better served turning out for Team Bury as he continues his rehabilitation from the injury that kept him out for 14 months.
Luke Ingram (sprained ankle), skipper Tom Bullard (shin) and Danny Cunningham (shin) could both return tomorrow.
Craig Nurse (calf) may also be involved, while Russell Short (ankle), Lee Smith (knee), Lee Reed (hernia), Mark Coulson (back) and Marcus Garnham (groin) are all carrying knocks.
Sam Reed (hamstring) appears to be over his recent injury setbacks, while John Sands (tendonitis) continues to get up to speed having hardly played this season before he moved to Ram Meadow in October.
Billy Clark is fit, but suspended for Tuesday’s visit of Margate.
Bury (from): Bullard, B Clark, R Clark, Coulson, Cunningham, Garnham, Hall, Hitching, Ingram, Kearns, Nunn, Nurse, L Reed, S Reed, Sands, Short, Smith.