No celebrating just yet as Poppies stand on the brink of title glory

Joint-boss Thomas Baillie insists Kettering Town will keep their feet on the ground as they close in on the title
Joint-boss Thomas Baillie insists Kettering Town will keep their feet on the ground as they close in on the title

Thomas Baillie insists no-one at Kettering Town will be celebrating anything just yet – even though it is now seemingly as case of when, not if, they will be crowned champions.

The Poppies thumped Hanwell Town 4-1 at Latimer Park yesterday (Saturday)as their magnificent run was extended to nine wins from the past 10 matches in the Evo-Stik Southern League Division One Central.

Both second-placed Bedworth United and third-placed Aylesbury were held to draws, which now means Kettering hold a mammoth 14-point lead at the summit with seven games to play.

With Aylesbury hosting Bedworth next weekend when the Poppies head to Uxbridge, they could even get a chance to wrap up the title when they visit St Ives Town on March 28.

But, for the time being, Baillie insists he and fellow joint-boss will be keeping the players’ feet on the ground as they aim to finish the job.

Goals from James Clifton, David Kolodynski, Josh Moreman and Brett Solkhon wrapped up another convincing home success.

And while Baillie is staying focused on the job, he admitted he could feel the excitement building during yesterday’s victory.

“No-one will be celebrating anything because we simply won’t allow that to happen,” Baillie said.

“We know that the teams in second and third play each other next Saturday but we will just focus on trying to get another victory knowing that one or them, if not both, will drop points.

“We will keep ourselves in order but clearly we are putting ourselves in a fantastic position.

“To be honest, I could see and feel the excitement building amongst the fans on Saturday.

“And it’s simple for us, we just have to keep doing what we have been doing all season.

“We have managed to grind out a number of wins along the way, even when we haven’t produced the greatest of performances.

“No-one will be getting carried away.

“It’s an exciting time but we have won nothing yet and, although the odds are firmly stacked in our favour, we are keeping our feet on the ground.”

As far as the win over Hanwell was concerned, Baillie was impressed as his team made light work of a team who had been in impressive form of late while also boasting one of the best away records in the division.

“Their away form has been fantastic but we are on a great run,” he added.

“We are full of confidence and it’s obviously going to take a good team to stop us at the moment.

“It was a bit of a non-event for the first few minutes but we scored two goals and, from there, it felt like it was a case of how many we would get.

“They will be disappointed with how they performed but maybe we should give ourselves a bit of credit for how we are playing.”