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Mark Saunders says Tiverton Town must win pitch battle

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: January 16, 2013

Tiverton Town

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A change of approach may be needed to drag Tiverton Town out of their poor recent run of results, according to manager Mark Saunders.

The Tivvy boss has been left contemplating changes to the way his side sets up to play, after watching the Yellows surrender a 1-0 lead at home to Bishop's Cleeve in their last Evp-Stik League Division One South and West match to draw 1-1.

The poor result, against a side second from bottom in the table, was partly put down to the abysmal pitch at Ladysmead which saw Tiverton, who had their match away at Yate Town last Saturday postponed, struggle to play their normal passing game.

With the playing surface not likely to be much better for the visit of North Leigh this Saturday, Saunders admits a subtle change might be needed. "We might have to adapt it a little bit accordingly, but I want us to carry on playing football," he said.

"It depends on the pitch, really, because in the last home game we gave the ball away in our half too cheaply, by trying to play the passing game that we had been playing early on in the season.

"The pitch was so bobbly – it's knackered this year. It's ridiculous because of the weather we've had. But you've got to be adaptable and that's down to the players."

Searching for answers to the poor recent run of results, which has seen Tivvy go without a win since a 2-0 victory over Wimborne Town on November 17, Saunders added: "The confidence has seemed to have gone out of a lot of the guys as well.

"If we can put in a run of games together and stay in the play-offs, then that will be a good achievement for the lads. We're trying different things, but it's proving difficult."

North Leigh have won just one of their last 11 League games, but Saunders said: "It won't be easy against them. It will probably suit them, with the pitches being heavy again. They've got some big, strong lads in their team."

Truro City battled hard in last night's Blue Square Bet South fixture away to leaders Salisbury City but eventually went down to a 4-3 defeat.

Two goals from Chris McPhee put the Wiltshire side in charge, but last-placed Truro hit back to restore parity just after the half-time break with goals from Barry Hayles and Kieffer Moore.

Theo Lewis put the hosts in front again, but the visitors equalised once more with a Martin Watts strike. Hopes of an away point were dashed, though, when Jamie White grabbed a stoppage-time winner for Salisbury.

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