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Grecians lament injury problems for Gow

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: October 27, 2012

Exeter City's Alan Gow (right) has been struggling for fitness this season due to a persistent thigh injury PICTURE: Graeme Truby/Pinnacle

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There cannot be many teams that can boast a 100% winning record against one of their Football League rivals, but Cheltenham Town can if they point to their record against Exeter City.

In six previous encounters between the two Westcountry sides, the Robins have won all six. To be fair, the two sides have not met in competitive action since 2002, but today, the Grecians have a chance to end that record when the two clash at Whaddon Road in the quest for League Two points.

"We have had a few situations where we have had things like that and it will be nice to put that one to bed," Tisdale said. "Before we played Aldershot this year, we hadn't won there, so hopefully we can end this statistic as well.

"It is a good ground to play at and I think any game is good to win, but it will certainly be nice to beat them for the first time.

"Billy Jones is there now and I am not surprised he is doing well for them. He is a terrific chap and played for us twice and did very well. I am very fond of Billy and I hope he doesn't perform too well. But we certainly know what to expect from Billy.

"Cheltenham play a very effective game and they have some very effective individual players.

"They have a manager that has been there through a season or two in order to get some consistency in their team, it is a nice ground with a great surface and it will be a very good game to play in. Any result there will be heard earned."

The Grecians certainly had to work hard to end their losing run on Tuesday and a point from a 1-1 draw at Dagenham & Redbridge is no bad return. It was not a vintage performance from Exeter by any means, but Tisdale was happy with what he saw and believes it gives them something to build on at Whaddon Road today.

"We had a poor run of results and it was important that we got something," Tisdale said.

"We were very competitive, the players didn't play with their usual confidence and freedom, but life isn't that simple. You are affected by results and the emotions of losing the previous game.

"I was very pleased with how we competed on Tuesday and that in the last 20 minutes, the players were looking to win the game," Tisdale said.

"It is a long season and we will have good and bad spells.

"We have had a bad spell and hopefully that is the end of it, we will not get it all our own way and today is a day for looking at the next few games.

"We got a decent result at Dagenham and now we go to Cheltenham hoping to start rolling again."

Key to Exeter's hopes is Alan Gow, who has been in and out of the reckoning due to a troublesome thigh injury. There is no doubt that when he does play, Exeter are a far more formidable side, but Tisdale is having to be careful with the talismanic Scot.

"Alan has missed a lot of football in the last six weeks and most importantly, he is getting over a thigh injury which has hampered him terribly in the last month or so," Tisdale said.

"It is not a definite, but there is a chance that he may start.

"You do get into the habit of detraining and up to Tuesday, I think he had only done seven, eight or nine full days' training in six weeks, so the body gets into the cycle of detraining.

"When you have a very important player, you try to get them fit for Saturday and when you put them on the pitch, they are vulnerable because they aren't sharp and as was the case at Northampton, he came on and got clattered and aggravated his thigh.

"It comes to a point where you have to slow right down and build him up slowly.

"I resisted the temptation to bring him on earlier on Tuesday, so we will monitor him very closely because the bigger picture is the whole season."

Exeter City (from): Krysiak, Evans; Tully, Woodman, Bennett, Baldwin, Coles, Sercombe, Oakley, Gow, Davies, Cureton, Doherty, Amankwaah, Frear, O'Flynn, Nichols, Bauza, Keohane, Chamberlain, Dawson, Moore-Taylor, Jagger-Cane, Micklewright, Roper, Wannell.

Unavailable: Reid, Gosling (on loan to Dorchester Town), Knowles (on loan to Barnstaple Town).

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