Apr 9 2012 By Jon Batham
GORDON Bartlett hailed the depth of his Wealdstone squad ahead of a season-defining 48 hours this week.
Stones face Blue Square South strugglers Hampton & Richmond tonight (Monday) in the final of the Middlesex Senior Cup, before one of the biggest derby clashes for years with Harrow Borough on Wednesday evening where critical points in the playoff scrap will be up for grabs.
The latter is clearly the top priority for Bartlett and co, especially after Saturday’s 4-1 win over Kingstonian coupled with other results put the men of The Vale slap bang in the hunt.
However, Bartlett knows his side, who were FA trophy semi-finalists last month could just as easily end the season as nearly men if the next 48 hours goes belly up and therefore claims victory in the Middlesex Cup is crucial to give a sense of tangible reward to take forward into the final six league games.
And with the recent additions to his squad like James Mulley and Dean Green, plus the likes of Scott Fitzgerald, Tommie Hoban, Alex Dyer and James Hammond, all of whom did not feature against KS, the Stones’ boss is hopeful of success on both fronts.
He said: “At the end of a season the way you judge success is by what you win and by Wednesday night we could have been semi-finalists in the FA Trophy, runners up in the County Cup and blown out of the playoffs.
“We are in a cup final so we want to win it because if will mean silverware and it will stand us in good stead for Wednesday night - win that and wow are we in a good position.
“We have got a very good squad here. When you consider today on the bench we had the two Watford boys (Connor Smith and Tommie Hoban), Scott Fitzgerald and Peter Dean, then you have the likes of Nikki Ahamed, Dean Green, Alex (Dyer) and James (Hammond) who weren’t even involved today I could pretty much put a different side out for Monday if I wanted to.
“With three games in five days we will rotate it a little bit and make sure we are still fresh by next Saturday.”
Green is cup tied for the cup clash, but Hammond hopes to be available after missing the Ks win through illness.