Ottery seeking eighth straight win with visit of Tedburn St Mary
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Tomorrow (Saturday), Ottery St Mary will attempt to achieve a feat the club last managed back in the 2014/15 season – to win an eighth successive Macron Devon and Exeter League fixture.
The Otters made it a super seven straight wins with last Saturday’s 2-0 Washbrook Meadow win over Otterton and will match the run from four years ago if they see off visiting Tedburn St Mary at home (3pm).
The last time an Otters team won eight on the spin was when they were being managed by Mike Dawe and were on the way to winning the Division Six title.
This time round the team is led by Dave Fairweather, who was the Ottery second team boss back in 2014.
Last Saturday’s win was one that brought great satisfaction to the Ottery boss, who said: “Without doubt it’s the sort of game that last season – and indeed, earlier this season – we would have lost!
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“The big difference between then and now is that we are playing as a team. There’s clearly no more of what used to blight us and that was a case of individualism. Now we have a team all buying into the same thinking and sharing the same determination to, when it’s needed, dig deep and collectively work hard to get the result we want.”
He continued: “I have no doubt that when Otterton pitched up last Saurday and saw a heavy Washbrook Meadow surface they’d have licked their lips in anticipation of claiming a fourth straight win over us on our own pitch. However, we played well and fully deserved the clean sheet success.”
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Fairweather was particularly pleased with his side’s second goal. He explained why, saying: “Our second goal spoke volumes of where we are now as a team. There was some high pressing that was rounded off by Jordan [Wilkinson] ‘gambling’ and it paid off as he got the goal that effectively ended the game as a contest.”
The first Ottery goal was scored by an unfortunate Otterton defender who turned a Corey Ringer corner past his own glovesman!
The very fact the game was played at all owed much to the efforts of Ottery chairman Mikey Ringer.
Fairweather said: “In terms of the pitch, Ben [Rushden] put a shift in and much of the sterling effort came from Mikey [Ringer]. There’s no doubt their efforts helped us to get the game on when many pitches were again too wet for action.”
Tomorrow (Saturday) Ottery look for that eighth success and Fairweather says: “With the exception of the unavailable Adam Brook and Dan Jewell we are otherwise at full strength.
“It is our last game, sadly, before Christmas and, in the evening, we also have our club Christmas party, so it would be rather special to be able to celebrate another three points in party mode on Saturday night.”
He continued: “We won well at Tedburn earlier in the season [Ottery won 4-3 at Tedburn in late October], but I recall their manager saying after the game that he felt his side had played their poorest game for some time that day.
“That said, once again, I will be championing the lads with the fact that as long as we do the basics right and make sure it is us who are dictating play from the first whistle, then we will be able to see our run continue.”