Skipper Stohrer is feeling confident for Poppies’ survival bid

Gary Stohrer is confident Kettering Town can avoid the drop this season.
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The Poppies’ captain made his 200th appearance for the club in Tuesday’s 1-1 draw at bottom side AFC Telford United, which saw his team remain in the relegation zone in the Vanarama National League North but draw level on points with Buxton and Boston United.

The combative midfielder and his team-mates are now preparing for another crucial clash with Curzon Ashton, a team they could leapfrog with a win, as they look to play a home game for the first time since December 6 this weekend.

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And Stohrer believes the Poppies squad will continue with the gradual improvement they have shown under boss Lee Glover this season and get themselves out of trouble.

Captain Gary Stohrer made his 200th appearance for Kettering Town on Tuesday night. Picture by Peter ShortCaptain Gary Stohrer made his 200th appearance for Kettering Town on Tuesday night. Picture by Peter Short
Captain Gary Stohrer made his 200th appearance for Kettering Town on Tuesday night. Picture by Peter Short

“Personally, I am feeling confident about it and the group are as well,” the Poppies skipper said.

“We got a draw on Tuesday, which isn’t ideal, but in the grand scheme of things I don’t think it’s a bad point because Telford are fighting for their lives and don’t have a great deal to lose so they will be throwing the kitchen sink at everyone.

“From where we were at the start of the season to now, we have made massive improvements across the board.

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“The boys are on board with what the gaffer is trying to do and I honestly feel the only way is up. We are only going to get better and if we do, we will have enough to keep out of that relegation zone.

“Fingers crossed, we can get a home game on this weekend and we have done well at home this season.

“It will be tough, every game is in this league. But if we can get a win, suddenly we will be reeling a few teams in and we will be amongst it.

“There’s a lot of incentive for the lads to go and get the job done.”

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The 30-year-old admits his spell at Latimer Park has had “more ups than downs” after he was part of the Poppies squad that was promoted as Southern League Premier Central champions in 2019 and has been a mainstay ever since.

And he was delighted to hit the personal milestone of 200 appearances in midweek.

“The club had kept it on my radar but with a couple of postponements recently, I have had to wait for it,” he added.

“It’s a brilliant achievement and it’s something I wouldn’t have put my neck on the line to happen when I first joined the club but now here we are and who’d have thought it?

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“When I first joined we ended up in the play-offs with that ridiculous points tally but we followed that up by being promoted.

“Obviously the first couple of seasons in the National League North ended up being cancelled for Covid but then last season we were pushing for the play-offs and it was a successful one.

“On the whole, there have been more ups than down and hopefully, with the progress we are making from the start of the season to now, we can finish this one on a high as well.”