Graves happy with Vase win

Hucknall Town boss Andy Graves says he was pleased to see his side successfully negotiate their FA Vase clash with Eastwood CFC last weekend.
Andy Graves.Andy Graves.
Andy Graves.

The 5-0 victory at Watnall Road secured a path into the first qualifying round where the Yellows will now face East Midlands Counties League side Ashby Ivanhoe.

And Graves says squad depth was key to Saturday’s win.

He said: “We made a few changes, some forced and some by choice, which gave us an opportunity to look at different combinations and which we have the luxury of being able to do given the strength in depth we have.

“Some worked, some didn’t, but overall we were pleased to get through what we thought would be a tougher game.

“We did have to remind ourselves at half-time of the standards we have set and what was a comfortable lead could have been more so if we had taken our chances.

“After a couple of changes during the second half those standards returned and from our point of view the scoreline reflected the fact we finished chances better in the second half.”

Hucknall will head to Ashby Ivanhoe on October 22 after the Leicestershire-based outfit overcame Stone Old Alleynians in a replay on Tuesday.

Graves added: “Sometimes teams at the level above aren’t as strong as those in our league so we’re not particularly worried about going away to an EMCL side.

“I’ll hopefully be going to watch them in their game next week so I can have a look at what we’ll be up against but, as long as we’re still in the vein of form we’re in now, a tie like that will hold no fear for us.”

Attention now turns back to league action for Hucknall and their attempts to maintain a 100 per cent win record in the Central Midlands League South.

This weekend they will travel to Pinxton to face a side that currently sits sixth in the league table having won four of their seven games.

Hucknall are third and have a six point deficit to make up on leaders and current champions Selston, although they have four games in hand on the Parishioners.

Graves said: “To be honest I’d swap either of the cup wins we’ve just had for three points on Saturday as Pinxton are one of the clubs we’re likely to be fighting with for promotion come the end of the season.

“Therefore it’s important we go there and take points off them. They’ve already dropped several points this season and we need to be able to capitalise on that, especially when we play them and other teams around us.

“If anything the pressure is off us and on them given they won’t want to drop any more points.

“We’ve had a great start but there are still plenty of things we need to work on.

“You have to work very hard for anything in this league and the rewards are there at the end if you’re the best team.

“We’ll drop points eventually, of course, but it’s then how we respond to that which will be important if we’re to get promotion this season.”

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