Shaymen prepared for difficult surface

As Town fans travel down to Retford for what they expect to be a title celebration, they could be forgiven for hoping they never have to return to Cannon Park.

The open, weather beaten ground is shared with Worksop and as a consequence the pitch is not the best.

In fact when Town played Worksop there back in the middle of February, it was possibly the worst pitch they had played on all season.

Tom Baker bagged a penalty that day to secure a share of the spoils and he is apprehensive about returning to face already relegated Retford.

“We played Worksop there and it was a terrible pitch,” he said. “I imagine it will be even worse this time because of the nice weather we had last week.

“It is going to be bobbly, but a pitch is a pitch.

“Retford have struggled and hopefully we can go there, do a job and finish it off.”

Unlike the game against Worksop, when the opposition were still considered a threat to Town’s chances of back to back automatic promotions, Retford no longer have anything to play for.

And with the title all but in the bag the pressure is off the Shaymen.

“We go there expecting the worst,” said boss Neil Aspin. “But it won’t be any worse than it was the last time we played there.

“And the pressure is not on us like it was last time so we have more margin for error.”

Have there been worse pitches during Town’s time under Aspin?

Prescot Cables last season, with muddy puddles dotted all over the surface, would have to come pretty close.

And while it was dry and breezy at Kendal last month, a pitch that is flat in one half but slopes towards the goal in the other takes some getting used to. Conditions this afternoon after likely to be similar to those at Hucknall where dry weather had turned a rutted pitch into a minefield for any team looking to play football.

The key today looks like being get the ball into the box as quickly as possible and hope for the best.

Town fans wishing to book their place on the official supporters’ bus to Whitby on Wednesday can do so by calling 07707 143094. The cost will be £10 and transport leaves the Shay at 5.0.