HALL Road Rangers are hoping that their excellent home form can see off the visit of former manager Lee Hastings, when Winterton Rangers come to Haworth Park tomorrow (3pm)
Not since the defeat to current league leaders AFC Emley on September 19 has Dave Ricardo and his team suffered defeat at home.
Since then, ten games have been played, nine of which completed, and twenty-five points have been amassed which have contributed to almost half of fourth-placed Rangers points tally for the season.
Next in their way at the seemingly fortress stature of Haworth Park though is a former manager, Lee Hastings who brings his Winterton side, keen to build on their resounding 4-0 win at home to Dronfield Town last weekend.
Hastings was promoted to the Hall Road hotseat in the summer of 2014 after a spell as assistant manager, but left the club by mutual consent in December of the same year.
He was appointed Winterton boss in September 2015 after a spell ironically as Dave Ricardo’s assistant at Selby Town.
He has since transformed the fortunes of Winterton and will be keen to avenge the earlier season fixture which saw Hall Road run out 3-2 winners.
Hastings is likely to bring with him some former Hall Road players for the occasion also.
Matty Crane, who is Winterton’s top scorer, and winger Robbie Start both had spells with the club whilst Mike Walsh, who has also represented Winterton this season, made over 100 appearances in the hoops of Hall Road, and also captained the club.
Whilst all pleasantries will no doubt be left to one side once kick off arrives, current Hall Road management duo Ricardo, and Bill Gill will have to make one enforced change from the side which blew away Glasshoughton Welfare last Saturday.
Ricardo is looking to replicate one thing at least which Hall Road have shown in the last two matches:
“We have to ensure that we show the same intensity and kiler instinct we have demonstrated against Selby and Glasshougton.” said the Hall Road boss
“Winterton will pose different threats to our last two opposition in that I believe they will look to play more and not be such a physical threat.
Lee (Hastings) is a great guy and I enjoyed my time with him as my assistant at Selby however as I’m sure he will be feeling once we get down to the ground, friendships will go out the window.”
They are without Sam Belcher, who misses out through a single game suspension.
This could mean Brad Ricketts may deputise or they also have the option of returning in-form Danny Norton to the role, which could in turn, earn a recall for former Winterton striker Josh Batty.
Ricardo also has the likes of Thibault Granger, Louis Kirk, Ash Allanson, Gareth Owen and potentially Jamie Reeson all pushing for recalls.
Another home win for Hall Road could see them muscle their way into the automatic promotion places and the club have extended their drink offer once again to Hull City season card holders for this fixture.
Ricardo also believes the fans have a role to play:
“It would be great to see a crowd the size of our last home game, as it makes a massive difference to the players.”