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Top sides hold no fear for Torquay United

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: February 01, 2013

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Assistant manager Shaun Taylor says that travelling to another promotion-chasing team in Cheltenham Town tomorrow holds fewer fears for Torquay United than going to lower opposition.

After beating fifth-placed Exeter City 1-0 at St James' Park on Monday, the Gulls will try to follow up against the Robins (sixth) at Whaddon Road tomorrow.

"It's teams that are down at the bottom who have given us problems this season," said Taylor, who's standing in for manager Martin Ling during his sickness absence. "We've done better against the better sides."

So far, Burton Albion are the only top-six team in npower League Two to beat Torquay this season, and they were a little fortunate to win 2-1 at the Pirelli Stadium three weeks ago. But United have lost to four of the bottom-seven clubs.

"It was a massive boost to win on Monday, especially against our local rivals," said Taylor. "We hadn't won for six games, and we needed to get back on a winning run again. But we haven't done that yet because it's only one result. It's an upward start, and we'd like to see if we can follow it up."

There is no indication yet of when Ling might return.

The Gulls' boss had to miss the Exeter victory after being taken ill. He has since returned to his family home in Hertfordshire, where he is still understood to be having a range of tests.

Managing director Bill Phillips reported: "Martin is at home resting, and we hope and believe that he's suffering from a viral infection.

"The quicker that's sorted the better, and hopefully next week, but he will not be at Cheltenham on Saturday."

Phillips went on: "Martin wasn't there [at Exeter] on Monday, and Shaun and the team did well. We're cool with the whole thing."

Ling's illness has not affected any transfer plans that United might have had before the January 'window' closed last night.

"We have a squad of 24 players, and I know Martin and Shaun are satisfied with them," said Phillips.

"We would only bring in anyone who is better than the players who are here, and we've had no inquiries about players going out."

Cheltenham have certainly been busy in an attempt to improve on last season, when they beat Torquay in the play-off semi-finals but lost to Crewe Alexandra in the final.

Manager Mark Yates has brought in midfielder Jason Taylor from Rotherham United, striker Paul Benson from Swindon Town and defender Michael Hector from Reading this week.

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