With another game added to Poole’s fixture list after failing to dispatch Chippenham Town in the FA Cup, Dolphins’ barebone squad will be stretched to its limits in the coming weeks.
Poole will now have to contend with consecutive midweek fixtures until at least mid October – and with the lowest amount of players registered in the Southern League Premier South, will have to cope with minimal rotation in the process.
Manager Tom Killick revealled that stalwart Will Spetch had been playing recently with a stress fracture in his foot, with the centre-half playing through the pain barrier in aid of his side.
Speaking to All Poole Aren’t We, Killick stated: “I don’t know when he will be available. He’s been very, very typically Will in the sense that his mentality is that he will always try and play through the pain barrier. He’s done it for years, and he’s doing it again now.
“Most players would not be playing, but he is very keen to put himself through it. We just have to see how he responds to Saturday. By the end of his game from his point of view, I think he was suffering quite a lot.”
Dismissed in the midweek draw with Taunton, Spetch was also brought off early against Chippenham – despite his protests to continue.
“Although he was prepared to carry on, I just felt that was the right thing to do,” continued Killick. It’s a cliché – we haven’t got many players, but the players we’ve got I’ve got confidence throughout the squad.
“If it’s Sean Wright who plays, if it is Jez Bedford who plays, Luke Holmes was on the Bench, Thiago Cazé, if they get an opportunity, then I somewhat feel that is an opportunity those players deserve.”
Will Spetch will at least be rested on Tuesday – thanks to that one match suspension kicking in.
In Poole’s First Qualifying Round win over Swindon Supermarine Jamie Whisken played through a groin injury to captain the side to victory, with Killick also admitting that Josh Carmichael and Luke Holmes weren’t fully fit despite their involvement at the weekend.
“The physio wasn’t particularly keen on Holmes playing at all. In an ideal world we probably wouldn’t have played him at all, but we decided not to start him and then if things had gone differently, either from a negative point of view or a positive point of view, we probably wouldn’t have brought him on.
“Holmes will come into contention on Tuesday. Having said that, I thought Josh played really well – again, as you might expect, he ran out of steam a little bit, but in some ways we did as a group.
“With him not having the game time that others have had, he perhaps dipped a little bit earlier.”