Scott pinpoints “good spirit” to Thetford’s good start

CELEBRATION TIME: Harrison Ford (far left) after scoring on his Mildenhall Hall town debut in their 5-1 win over Brantham Athletic on Saturday
CELEBRATION TIME: Harrison Ford (far left) after scoring on his Mildenhall Hall town debut in their 5-1 win over Brantham Athletic on Saturday
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Mark Scott believes that the ‘good spirit’ at Thetford Town will take them far ahead of their opening match in the FA Cup tonight.

The Brecklanders host Thurlow Nunn League First Division side Swaffham Town in the extra preliminary round of the famous cup competition at Mundford Road (7.45pm).

All the winners from the 184 matches to be played this weekend will bag £1,500 and a place in the preliminary round at the end of the month.

And Scott’s side are one of eight ties to kick-off the road to Wembley tonight, which features 736 teams this year from around England and Wales.

“We’re looking forward to it after the good start to the season that we’ve had,” said Thetford’s manager.

“People will put us down as favourites but Swaffham are a good side and will be out to prove a point against us.”

Goals from Alex McIntosh and James Pipe helped Town to an opening day 2-1 win at FC Clacton on Saturday.

Scott’s side then followed that up with another win on Tuesday as they beat Walsham-le-Willows by the same scoreline.

Sam Bryant and Ryan Pearson were on target for the Brecklanders at Mundford Road to continue their perfect start to the new season.

“Six points from two games is excellent,” said Scott. “We have a good spirit at the club and all the players are up for the season.

“The spirit that the players have will take us far.”

Bruno Tavares (injured) and Sam Bryant (rested) are the only two expected changes to Thetford’s squad, who return to Premier Division action when they travel to Fakenham Town on Wednesday (7.45pm).

Elsewhere, Mildenhall Town host Gorleston in an all-Premier Division clash tomorrow (3pm).

The Hall began the new season on Saturday with a 5-1 thrashing of Brantham Athletic before a 3-0 defeat at Godmanchester Rovers on Wednesday.

Mildenhall handed a debut in-between the posts to 17-year-old Joe Isaacson at the weekend after their first-choice goalkeeper Josh Pope suffered a broken foot at the end of pre-season.

“We’re 95 per cent sure that he’s cracked a bone in his foot,” said Mildenhall’s director of football, Alan Alsop. “He’s getting an x-ray on Saturday but we expect him to be out for 6-8 weeks.”

Isaacson is expected to stay in goal for tomorrow’s cup match, while Hall will also welcome back striker Steve Holder to the squad.

Walsham-le-Willows visit United Counties League Premier side Boston Town tomorrow (3pm).

The Willows will look to get back to winning ways after losing at Thetford on Tuesday.

Paul Smith’s team started their campaign with a 2-0 away win at Ely City on Saturday before going down by the odd goal at Mundford Road earlier this week.

Walsham are also searching for their first victory in the FA Cup for three years after suffering extra preliminary round defeats to Burnham Ramblers and Tower Hamlets in the last two seasons at Summer Road.

Team Bury travel to United Counties League Premier outfit Peterborough Northern Star tomorrow (3pm).

Ross Wilding’s side have started their First Division campaign with 2-0 wins over Woodbridge Town and Stowmarket ahead of their return to the FA Cup this weekend.

“It’s fantastic to be back,” said Wilding. “It’s a great buzz for the players to say they’ve played in the FA Cup.

“They’ll be favourites but we have a lot of confident youngsters in our squad.”

The Blues then host Debenham LC at Ram Meadow on Tuesday (7.45pm).