No holding back as Poppies return to Latimer Park

Trialist Alfie Taylor is set to make another appearance for Kettering Town when they play Burton Park Wanderers at Latimer Park tonight. Picture by Alison Bagley

Trialist Alfie Taylor is set to make another appearance for Kettering Town when they play Burton Park Wanderers at Latimer Park tonight. Picture by Alison Bagley

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It seems there will be no holding back from Kettering Town when they make their first appearance of the summer at Latimer Park this evening (Friday), albeit as the away side.

The Poppies are the ‘visitors’ for their latest pre-season outing as they take on ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Division One landlords Burton Park Wanderers (7.45pm).

The game will represent Kettering’s first outing in front of their own fans since they suffered the heartbreak of losing 3-2 to Slough Town in the Southern League Division One Central play-off final at the beginning of May.

And, with just two weeks to go until the new campaign gets under way, the Poppies faithful are set to get a good look at the vast majority of the first-team squad, now under the leadership of joint-managers Thomas Baillie and Scott Machin.

Their latest outing friendly outing saw them claim a 3-0 success at Harborough Town.

And Machin said: “We are quite pleased with where we are at.

“The first-team squad are looking very sharp and it was good to get a few of them back into it on Tuesday because some of them missed the game at St Neots last weekend.

“It was good to give someone like Brett Solkhon a rest because he played 90 minutes on a plastic pitch last Saturday but he will be back in for tonight.

“I think we will be putting a strong side out there from the start.

“It’s our first game back at Latimer Park and the supporters will be keen to see the first-team boys in action.”

The game is also likely to be the final opportunity for trialists to impress with Baillie and Machin set to make decisions on those players before Kettering go to Dunstable Town for a friendly on Tuesday.

One of those trialists, former AFC Rushden & Diamonds striker Alfie Taylor, is set to play a part having opened the scoring for the Poppies at Harborough in midweek.

Burton, meanwhile, will be having their first run-out of pre-season under the management of Jimmy Simpson following the resignation of Joe Smyth last week.

The Poppies have also confirmed there will be a fans forum at Latimer Park on Wednesday night from 8pm.

Chairman Ritchie Jeune and the rest of the board will be outlining the present condition of the club as well as discussing their plans for the future before taking questions from supporters.