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Crusaders plan to rise to face Maidenhead challenge

'Massive underdogs' travel to flyaway league leaders

Malcolm Howe

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Malcolm Howe

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Crusaders plan to rise to face Maidenhead challenge

James Harper - in line for Hungerford league debut

HUNGERFORD TOWN face the task of toppling Vanarama National League South leaders Maidenhead United at York Road on Saturday with manager Bobby Wilkinson acknowledging that his side are “huge underdogs.”

Alan Devonshire’s soaraway side are four points clear of the field after their storming start to the campaign, headed by striker Dave Tarpey’s 19 goals.

Tarpey is a player well-known to Wilkinson, who had him under his wing when coaching at Reading Town: “He’s the best striker in the league and a great lad, and I know his dad Brendan will help him to keep his feet on the ground.

“He deserves every bit of credit he gets,” he added, “and my only surprise is I can’t believe that a league club hasn’t taken a gamble on him. I know he’s 27 but he must be worth a go.”

Wilkinson may be hoping that somebody comes in before Saturday’s game to remove the threat, but Wilkinson is relying on his own side to go out and give it a go.

“Nobody ie expecting us to win there,” he said. “We are so much the underdogs it isn’t true.

“ But we’re up for it and we’ll hustle and bustle and try to put on a good show and you never know what can happen.”

Wilkinson will have a full strength squad available to him with former Reading midfielder James Harper in line to make his league debut for the club.

What's the odds?

MAIDENHEAD are listed around 13/8 on by bookmakers with Hungerford 3/1 to win and a draw 13/8.

The odds on a 1-0 win for Hungerford are 14/1, further out than the 12/1 quoted for Maidenhead to win 3-0.

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