Westcott says Haverhill Borough are ‘over-achieving’
Martin Westcott admits his Haverhill Borough side are ‘over-achieving’ in the Thurlow Nunn League First Division this season.
Borough chalked up an impressive eighth league win in a row at the weekend, beating second-placed Stowmarket Town 1-0 at The New Croft 3G.
Before embarking on this winning run, Westcott’s side were sat in sixth place and four points adrift of the promotion places in the First Division table.
But a perfect haul of 24 points from their last eight games has seen them climb into the third and final promotion spot in the table, and now breathing down the necks of joint-leaders Coggeshall Town and Stowmarket.
Yet despite their good form, player-manager Westcott still insists the aim for the club, who he says operate the team with no budget for paying players, is to regain their place in the Emirates FA Cup for next season.
“I think we’re over-achieving at the moment, but long may it continue,” he said.
“We’re playing teams with significantly bigger budgets and bigger squads than us.
“I want to get our FA Cup place back for next season. It might sound strange for me to say, but that’s key for us.
“The only income we get at the club is from the gates and from the advertising boards around the ground, so to get back into the FA Cup would help provide more income.
“When we got through a few rounds (in 2014/15) the money we got was a third of our income that season.
“I can’t really talk about promotion until you get over the line and there’s still a lot of the season left to play.
“We’ve got 12 more games to play, and Diss (Town, in fourth place) will still fancy their chances as well. They’ve got 16 more games left to play.
“I expect Coggeshall and Stowmarket to get promoted and the other team could be one of five or six sides.”
Since joining the Thurlow Nunn League in 2013, Borough have regularly finished in the top half of the table.
In their debut season in 2013/14 the club came agonisingly close to finishing in the top three of the First Division, with Ipswich Wanderers pipping them to third place by just one point.
Westcott boosted his squad ahead of last weekend’s game against Stowmarket with the signing of Luke Clark, from Coggeshall.
The midfielder, who captained the Essex side to a league and cup double in the Essex & Suffolk Border League last season, had fallen out of favour at West Street this term, making 13 appearances in all competitions for the Seedgrowers.
Clark is set to keep his place in Borough’s side for their trip to mid-table Team Bury (14th) this Saturday (3pm), while the recently returning defender Lee Hurkett could also start.
Casey Phillips broke his nose in the early minutes of the Stowmarket game and, along with Ryan Phillips and Aaron Forshaw (both injured), is expected to be ruled out.