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CPL round 14 preview

Wildcats look to move further away from the bottom

They are off the bottom and now Taree Wildcats want to stay off the bottom of the Coastal Premier League.

The Wildcats have had a mortgage on last spot since the CPL started, but recent results suggest the Manning side have finally turned the corner.

Should they claim all three points in Saturday’s vital home clash with Sawtell, the Wildcats will move four points clear and take another step away from the foot of the ladder.

“The way we’ve been playing lately it’s no less than what we deserve. We’ve been going okay,” Wildcats coach Ben Sedlen said.

“We’re off the bottom and now we want to stay off the bottom so this is a big game for us, but the boys are confident.”

Sedlen, however, knows the Scorpions still have a game in hand so the current standings were skewed a little bit.

Attacking duo Jackson Witts and Dylan Murphy along with goalkeeper Dylan Webber will return as the Wildcats look to register their first back-to-back winning sequence since the CPL’s inception.

“I don’t think they’ve done that so it will show them they’re good enough to play in this level of competition which I’ve believed from the start,” Sedlen said.

“There shouldn’t be any excuses, but Sawtell are a pretty good team who hammered us in the first round.

“We’re not going in complacent and know if we’re not on our game we can get beat. We also know if we turn up and play as well as we can we can match anybody.”

Sawtell coach Joe Skrtic is also aware of the importance of the fixture although he will be confident after the Scorpions registered a 6-2 win over the Taree side on May 8.

“It was a very close game even though we won by a few goals,” he said.

“They’re a physical side who play football as well so we know it’s going to be a big challenge for us because they have improved quite a bit since we last met them.

“We’re looking forward to the challenge … it is a big game for us.”

Skrtic’s men will be understrength although he refused to use that as an excuse.

“It doesn’t matter what 11 we put on, every player puts in 100 percent and we try and get the best out of all our players so all the boys are keen to play on the weekend.

“We’ll do our very best with whatever starting 11 we have.”

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