New joint manager Gary Sucharewycz watched Rainworth MW chalk up their first win of the season on Tuesday night, and then promised ‘a lot more to come’.
Speaking after the Wrens recorded a 2-1 success at their customary happy hunting ground of Brigg Town’s The Hawthorns, which lifted them off the foot of the Evo-Stik League Division One South table, Sucharewicz paid tribute to the side that he and co-manager Ian Robinson have thrown together in the short time since they arrived at the club last Thursday.
Their first match in charge saw eight new players in the starting line-up and two more emerging from the bench, and although they lost that game 2-1 at home to Chasetown, the side at last looked like a true Evo-Stik outfit, and there were signs of a feelgood factor returning to Kirklington Road.
That was only enhanced by Tuesday night’s victory, which was achieved with a couple more new faces, thanks to goals by two of the players who were already at the club, Craig Mitchell and Stevie Owens.
Said Sucharewycz: “Putting the first win on the board so soon feels good. The lads have been absolutely brilliant, not just tonight but from the minute we walked into the ground on Thursday for the first training session.
“They have given their all, and could have sneaked a result against Chasetown after scoring first, and although some of the lads have not played for quite a long time and lack a bit of match fitness, their application, commitment and work rate have got us through.
“There’s much more to come from them once they are match fit and have accustomed themselves to playing together. Some of them have got to get used to the way we want to do things, and we are trying in these early days to change a few things.
“But look at players like Matt Millns, he has a lot of experience at this level but hasn’t played for two years, yet he’s been immense at the back for us tonight.
“Alton Rennalls hasn’t played for a year, Alex Ford and Grant Ryan have both been out for a couple of months, so there’s a lot more to come from them, but we’re not getting carried away.
“It’s one win, and we expect to take a couple of steps forward and one back in the coming weeks, but it’s a win which has provided a confidence boost.”
One huge disappointment has been the loss of Notts County on-loan goalkeeper Harry Andrews after just one match. Andrews was man of the match against Chasetown on Saturday, but suffered a reported broken leg in training with the Magpies on Monday.
Sucharewicz added: “It’s a blow for the lad and for us and we’re absolutely gutted for him. He’s a really nice lad with an old head on 17-year-old shoulders. He commanded the back four and made some great saves, and we wish him a speedy recovery.
“Fortunately we were able to find a replacement with Walsall agreeing to loan us youth player Liam Roberts, and he’s come in tonight and acquitted himself well too.
“It’s a shame he was denied a clean sheet when Brigg scored in added time - as defenders in our playing days we love clean sheets, and the goal was a bit of a blip in terms of concentration but getting our first three points was the important thing.”
On Saturday Rainworth have the chance for early revenge for their 4-2 Doodson Sport Cup defeat at Loughborough Dynamo last Tuesday when the Leicestershire side visit Kirklington Road for a re-arranged game after both sides were knocked out of the FA Cup.
Loughborough have won five of their first six league games so it will be a much sterner test, and the friendly rivalry between the Wrens and Dynamo manager Tommy Brookbanks goes back many years to the days when he was always a worthy opponent playing Notts Alliance football against Rainworth.
In those days he usually came off second best against what was a very good Rainworth side at that level, so he still enjoys putting one over on them when he can.
The new-look Wrens, though, will be equally determined to see that he doesn’t, but whatever happens, the match will be a useful guide as to how far they have come in the last couple of weeks.