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Grantham Town enjoy a perfect bank holiday

Grantham Town enjoyed a successful bank holiday weekend, with two wins out of two.

Toiling in the heat, the Gingerbreads progressed to the next round of the FA Cup after they defeated Barton Town 3-1 on Saturday, and then maintained their unbeaten start to their league campaign at home to Basford United on Monday.

Town’s joint manager Paul Rawden said: “We’ve had a fantastic start to what has been a tough opening set of fixtures.

Town goal scorer Gregg Smith would leave former Gingerbreads keeper Kieran Preston staring in disbelief at his second half header. Photo: Toby Roberts (15747811)
Town goal scorer Gregg Smith would leave former Gingerbreads keeper Kieran Preston staring in disbelief at his second half header. Photo: Toby Roberts (15747811)

“Coming out of Saturday’s win in the FA Cup, to having to go again in another blistering afternoon, takes a lot of mental and physical toughness. Having lots of pre-season matches has got us really match fit.

“After going in front, we had to withstand a lot of pressure on Saturday. We’ve put in a fantastic performance and had a bit of luck with them not getting on the end of a couple of crosses.”

The Gingerbreads went in front through Gregg Smith, but the Northern Counties side equalised almost immediately.

Rawden said: “ We’ve got the goal by doing what we’ve been asking them to do, putting the ball in the right areas. We knew the Basford keeper struggles to command his area.

“Danny Racchi has put a great ball over, and Gregg has done what comes so effortlessly for him.”

Grantham have been drawn away at Nantwich Town on Saturday, September 7, in the FA Cup First Round Qualifying.

Rawden said it looked like a tough tie. He said: “We’ve been given a tough away draw in the FA Cup.

“Nantwich have started their season really well. They may have lost a few players from their play-off campaign but they’re still a very good and strong side.

“But we’re in a good place too, so we’ll be prepared as normal and looking to progress.”

The Gingerbreads returned their attention to the league on Monday when they hosted Basford United at The Meres, coming out of the fixture with a slender 1-0 victory.

Rawden said: “The win makes us leapfrog Basford, and we’ve played one less game than them.

“Even at this early stage, for us to do well we have to pick up points at home. We’ve done that in both games so far.”

And Grantham are at home again tomorrow when the visitors will be Whitby Town.

Rawden said: “Whitby come to us on Saturday after two wins over the bank holiday weekend. They’re level on points with us but have played a match more.”

Rawden said he and co-boss Russ Cousins had given the team a night off from training as reward for their hard work over the last week to 10 days.

Rawden and Cousins are pleased with the squad they have assembled, with some players’ talents still yet to be showcased.

Rawden said: “We’ve got a squad who want to play. We’ve seen some not get a game yet.

“Saturday was a perfect example of how we need the squad we’ve got. Connor [Bartle] is still coming back from his injury, AJ [Adeleken] was working so Jack McGovern stepped in at left back. He’s worked really hard and didn’t look out of position at all.”

Kick-off at The Meres tomorrow is 3pm.

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