Brunton ready for Eagles challenge

Action from Irchester United's 1-0 defeat at ON Chenecks in UCL Division One last weekend. The Romans take on Northampton Spencer in the NFA Junior Cup this weekend. Picture by Dave Ikin
Action from Irchester United's 1-0 defeat at ON Chenecks in UCL Division One last weekend. The Romans take on Northampton Spencer in the NFA Junior Cup this weekend. Picture by Dave Ikin

Dale Brunton is already planning ahead for life at Rushden & Higham United.

Brunton stepped up from his role as first-team coach to take the reins at Hayden Road after Aidy Mann resigned as manager following the 3-1 defeat at Bugbrooke in UCL Division One last weekend.

He led the Lankies to an impressive 2-2 draw at high-flying Thrapston Town on Tuesday night.

And he is already gearing for this weekend as they turn their attention to the NFA Junior Cup and a tricky home clash with Northants Combination outfit Corby Eagles.

But Brunton was delighted with the reaction of the players in midweek and he is confident they have what it takes to move into the next stage of a competition the club won two seasons ago.

“The players were aware of what was going on with Aidy at the weekend and that I was going to be placed in charge,” Brunton said.

“I thought they were unbelievable on Tuesday night.

“We had nine first-team players missing and three came up from the reserves and played 90 minutes.

“I was delighted with them to be honest and their performances mean it will be hard to drop any of them for the weekend.

“Corby Eagles have been going very well in the Combination and I understand they have players who have been at a higher level.

“But we all know how great this competition is after winning it recently and I am sure that is still fresh in some of the players’ memories.”

While Thrapston and Rushden & Higham were sharing the points on Tuesday, Whitworth were picking up one of the most incredible results of the season so far as they thumped struggling St Neots Town Saints 10-1.

The Flourmen head to league rivals Peterborough Sports in the Junior Cup at the weekend.

Burton Park Wanderers host Combination side Kettering Nomads while Thrapston entertain Netherton United.

Irchester United take on Northampton Spencer at Alfred Street while Raunds Town also have home advantage against Silverstone.

Rothwell Corinthians are in fine form at the moment and they make the short trip to Combination side Corby S&L Khalsa.

Stewarts & Lloyds were hammered by Corby Eagles in the first round of the Junior Cup but they are in UCL Division One action on Saturday when they head to Blackstones.