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Denton reflects on Ammers draw, Tigers points haul so far, & the NCEL top flight!

On Saturday, Worksop Town drew 1-1 with Yorkshire Amateur and as Craig Denton and his merry men came down the M1 on their way back to Sandy Lane, pleased with their singular points.

“Yes, it was a good point. If I’m being honest, I probably would have taken it before the game”, reflected Denton.

“I thought we were on the back foot a little bit in the first half. Yorkshire Amateur kept the ball really well but we went there with a game plan and it worked for us. In the second half – in the final thirty minutes of the game – we dominated that part of the game. We had chance upon chance to take all three points.

Craig Denton, Worksop Town manager.

“I was disappointed at the end that we’d lost out to the three points but I was obviously delighted with the point against a strong Yorkshire Amateur side. Upon reflection, it was a fair result.

On the prospect of facing second-bottom Harrogate Railway this coming Saturday, “No, you can’t take it for granted at all in this league. Anyone, as you’ve seen in recent results, can win or lose against anybody so we know it’s really important that we continue with the right mentality and professionalism.

“It’s going to be different because I think Worksop Town and the football team I’ve created rise to the challenge of coming up against stronger teams, for example against Yorkshire Amateur and Penistone. Our focus in training this week will be keeping our professionalism and standards and going there to try and collect three points but we know that won’t be easy.”

We’re nearly halfway through the season. Are you happy with the position that Worksop Town are in?

“Yes I am. I’ve done a lot of reflection in terms of where we started and where we are now. I think our squad has got stronger and that’s got nothing to do with new additions or anything like that. We recruit really well and we’ll bring players in who want to play the club. It doesn’t matter from Stocksbridge from the Evo-Stik or they’re coming from Ollerton or Shirebrook. I’ve got a particular player whom I like in my team and I think they’ve just delivered.

“All the players have really bought into what we’re wanting to do at the club and that’s testament to their hard work. I’m delighted in our position. I’d like to get a couple more big league games in but I know that’s not possible. We’ll see if we can try and catch up on our games in hand.

“It’s a lovely position to be in and it’s obviously nice getting those Worksop fans and those attendances going up because they’re seeing a side that are winning games. Teams come up against Worksop and it’s really hard for them to beat us. It’s great for me and I think the players are flourishing and are really enjoying it.”

You’re on target for 74 points this season. If you keep on going at the average rate you are – 1.94 – that’s the amount of points you’d achieve. Are you genuinely happy with that or would you be happy?

“So just short of 2 points per game.  We looked at teams who were going to be competing in that top 3 or top 4 spot and we thought that if we can compete with them and take points off them that would be a positive. We havebeen disappointed that we’ve not taken any points off Handsworth, Bridlington or Hemsworth so, on reflection of that, we’re probably just a little bit disappointed.

“But when we look at our points per game and average then that comes across really strongly. I think our focus is just to keep going and do what we’re doing so, yes, I am happy with that.”

Regarding your points per game, only Penistone and Yorkshire Amateur have got a better points per game average than yourself. Yorkshire Amateur are obviously quite a long way ahead but Penistone have got 2 points per game. Do you think the league’s much tighter between the top eight or nine than it ever has been?

“Yes, I think so. What we did say at the start of the season is that the team who comes in around Christmas who is averaging those two points per game, that’s going to be the team that’s going to be right up there to the final whistle. If we’re obviously in that pack, that’s where we want to be!

“It’s mega tight but it is where we want to be as a club and that’s where I want to be as a Manager. I think it’s going to be interesting to see the depth of squad that others have around us. There are a few games where Yorkshire Amateur are coming up against a couple of tricky fixtures so it’s going to be a really entertaining Christmas and January period.”

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