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Newmarket Town ready to take on Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division leaders Stowmarket Town

With his side in the midst of a four-game losing run, Newmarket Town player-manager Michael Shinn could be forgiven for dreading Saturday’s home clash against runaway leaders Stowmarket Town.

After all, the Old Gold & Blacks, who hold a 15-point lead at the top of the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division, are unbeaten in 2019/20 and have dropped points in just five games.

However, Newmarket were the last side to beat Stowmarket in a league encounter back in April of last year and Shinn is hoping that his men can repeat that trick.

Michael ShinnPicture: Mark Westley
Michael ShinnPicture: Mark Westley

“I said to the boys recently that we can either stay in this rut and finish sixth or seventh, which would still be seen as a good season, or we can regroup, get the smiles back on faces, kick on again and maybe finish fourth, third or better,” said Shinn.

“I am backing the boys to turn up and play well on Saturday.

“We are the last team to beat them and obviously they have strengthened a lot since then. They are in a league of their own but I think we can get something from it.

“A lot of time it comes down to belief and the mental side of the game. Maybe the recent results have knocked us a bit, but once we start trusting ourselves again individually and collectively, it will turn around.

“You never know against Stowmarket. They have drawn with Whitton recently and lost to Wroxham in the Vase, so if things go in our favour we have got a chance. Why not? It would be the sort of result that gets us going again.”

Newmarket’s latest defeat came at the hands of hosting Woodbridge Town, who ran out 2-0 winners at Notcutts Park on Saturday.

Nevertheless, the Jockeys are still nicely placed in fourth and only have a five-point gap to Norwich United in the second potential promotion place.

“The top five is going to keep changing between now and the end of the season,” added Shinn.

“Despite this little rut we are in nobody has really got away from us and I do not see that changing.

“If we can put a couple of wins on the board soon then the table will change again.”