Sidmouth Town in home pre-season action on Saturday

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Football generic picture - Credit: Archant

Sidmouth Town have a very special draw taking place before their Saturday afternoon pre-season meeting with Elburton Villa (3pm).

The draw is to decide who will be the shirt sponsors on the Vikings’ three senior teams’ shirts for the coming season.

The idea for the draw came from Town boss Josh Stunell and his assistant John Clements.

The Vikings boss says: “I’d seen something similar a few seasons before and it struck me as being a great way of generating good funds for the club.

“John and I did the legwork and we were delighted that 49 local business people all signed up for the idea.

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“At noon on Saturday, ouncillor Stuart Hughes will be making the draw at which three businesses will be drawn, one to be on the shirts of the first team, another on the 2nd team kit and a third to adorn the third team strip.”

There’s plenty of positive things happening on and off the pitch at Manstone Lane as a new South West Peninsula League Eastern Division draws near.

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The floodlight poles are now in pLace and the next stage is for the bulbs to be fitted.

Stunell says: “It’s great to see the pylons in place and their presence has given everyone a lift during the pre-season.”As for Saturday’s meeting with Elburton Villa, the Town manager says: “It will be a useful test for us. They [Elburton Villa] will play in the Premier Division this coming season after promotion from the Western Division.

“To be honest, we need the game. We had no game last weekend as we had a lot of players away for a number of reasons and anyway, the weather was against us, as it was in midweek.

“Thankfully there’s a decent forecast for tomorrow and I am also delighted that we have all but one of the first team squad available and so ought to be able to field a strong side.”

He continued: “I have a settled side for the coming season almost put to bed now.

There’s probably two berths up for grabs in terms of a ‘preferred starting eleven’ and this season I am really hoping that we enjoy a more consistent availability.

“If we can get the players fully committed to the cause in terms of them being available then I see no reason why we cannot have a very good season.

“The squad looks as strong as it has been for some time with serious competition for places across the pitch.”

Town start the season a week tomorrow (Saturday, August 15) with a Manstone Lane meeting with Torridgeside and Stunell is keen for the Vikings to make a flying start.

He says: “These last weeks are so important. Both the game tomorrow and next week’s midweek training sessions are so important in terms of the bigger picture. It is vital, I feel, that we hit the ground running next Saturday and for that to happen we need to be fully focussed for this game with Elburton Villa and treat it very much as if it was the opening day of the league season.”

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