PRO­MO­TION HOPE­FULS STONES ARE ON A ROLL

Harefield Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - By AN­DREW GEORGESON tms-sport@trin­i­tymir­ror.com @ageorgesonCN

GOR­DON BARTLETT praised the Stones’ ap­pli­ca­tion as they recorded a fourth con­sec­u­tive win by beat­ing Gosport Bor­ough 2-1 in Vanarama South.

And while Bartlett said the play-offs may be a “long-shot”, the Weald­stone boss said his play­ers are more than ca­pa­ble of car­ry­ing on their re­cent run.

The man­ager cred­ited re­turn­ing play­ers, the ad­di­tion of Da­gen­ham & Red­bridge young­ster Joe White and an im­proved work ethic as the rea­son the Stones have won five games in a row in all com­pe­ti­tions, in­clud­ing the win over Hen­don in the Mid­dle­sex Se­nior Cup.

At the very least, reck­ons Bartlett, he wants to carry on the mo­men­tum and lay the foun­da­tions for next sea­son.

“I think there’s been a bet­ter ap­pli­ca­tion over re­cent weeks,” said the Weald­stone man­ager. “We’ve shown great de­ter­mi­na­tion and are grind­ing out results.

“The at­ti­tude has changed. I can’t say the penny has dropped as such, just the work rate has been far bet­ter in the last month and the results have proved that.

“Our per­for­mances haven’t nec­es­sar­ily im­proved – we’ve def­i­nitely played bet­ter this sea- son – but there’s great de­sire and de­ter­mi­na­tion and the play­ers are work­ing for each other and reaping their re­wards.”

Two goals in a mat­ter of min­utes in the first half, from Ricky Wel­lard and Aryan Ta­jbaksh, helped over­come a 1-0 deficit against 10-man Gosport.

And the Stones have a great chance to keep the run go­ing with a match against strug­glers Truro on the hori­zon and Bartlett said his side will have a much bet­ter picture of the play-off sit­u­a­tion come Satur­day evening.

“We have the play­ers ca­pa­ble of car­ry­ing on this run but at this mo­ment we’re af­ter a de­cent fin­ish. I ex­pected us to be in the top eight at the start of the sea­son and that’s still the case,” he said.

“We might get in the play-offs but it’s a long shot.

“It’s good for the at­mos­phere around the club though, if we can lay the foun­da­tions for next sea­son.

“That’s the very least I expect. By next week­end we will be in a bet­ter po­si­tion to know where we are, but it’ll still be an out­side chance.”

Mean­while Hayes & Yead­ing boosted their Evo-Stik South­ern Premier sur­vival hopes with a 2-1 win at Cirences­ter Town as 19-year-old acad­emy grad­u­ate Dy­lan Kear­ney scored af­ter 15 and 56 min­utes.

John-Pa­trick Fletcher

Weald­stone boss Gor­don Bartlett

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