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Jay’s Friday Briefing

Jay Saunders by David Couldridge 2022-23

‘This could be our toughest game for a while’ - Jay

Although Hungerford are fighting relegation, manager Jay Saunders knows we're in for a fight when we meet at Longmead on Saturday.

With Tonbridge a point from the play-offs, is this the game where we go into the top seven for the first time since September?

He said: "They will run through a brick wall, fight for their lives.  A few weeks ago people said they were dead and buried.  They've given themselves a chance.  I actually feel this will be the hardest game we've had for a few weeks.  It's going to be a game which recently we've struggled in against teams down there.  We played well, but have given away silly goals.  If we're going to make play offs we have to beat teams who are down there, but anyone thinking we've just got to turn up and it will be a hammering, it might not be as plain sailing as that.  If we're right and the players take on board what we've asked then I'm confident."


"Everyone in this league has still got someone to play for.  Teams are getting dragged into it in the bottom half, Welling, Dover have lost three, and when you look up everyone down maybe to Hemel will think they have a chance of making the play-offs."


Yesterday's transfer deadline came and went without any changes to the squad, the only news being Fyn Rutherford joining Margate on dual registration.


Jay said: "I'm very happy with my squad.  We added Santos this week and we've got boys out getting minutes on dual reg or on loan, Louis, Ruben, Woody(Nathan), and Joe Tyrie and we've still got those players if we need them. We've got good competition for all places and that's what you need for the run in.


"We've got to push as much as we can.  Santos got in touch with me about the possibility of coming back.  Charlton then got in touch.  He had a few offers, he was keen to come, and Charlton gave him the option of going where he wanted to go, and he said he wanted to go back to Tonbridge.  We saw how good he was first spell and I couldn't pass up on it.  He can play wide, centrally, and he gives us options across midfield, it's a no brainer."


On team news, Jay said:  "Craig's away with Monserrat, he misses only one game depending on flights, so Jamie's the only one, with his hand."


Photo: David Couldridge 

Published Friday 24th March 2023