Looking Ahead To Torquay
Dorking return to league action on Wednesday night as they travel to face Torquay United at Plainmoor. It's a first ever meeting between the two clubs who were formed exactly 100 years apart, with The Gulls founded back in 1899.
For Marc White's side it will be their first game in over ten days after last Tuesday's match at Halifax Town was unfortunately postponed due to a waterlogged pitch and the FA Cup took precedence across non-league fixtures this past weekend. Following the disappointing home defeat to Aldershot Town last time out, the manager will no doubt be looking for a positive response with another away fixture quickly following up as Wanderers head to Southend United on Saturday.
Last week's new signings Joe Cook and Archie Procter will both be in the matchday squad travelling down to Devon on Wednesday, a timely boost for Marc White as defenders Barry Fuller and Isaac Philpot remain sidelined for the next few weeks. Further up field Seb Bowerman and Harry Ottaway are both doubts heading into the game, whilst Josh Taylor will be available again after completing his suspension for collecting five yellow cards.
Opposition Focus: The Gulls
Despite currently being bottom of the National League, Torquay will be coming into Wednesday's game in high spirits. They notched their third league win of the campaign last Tuesday night with an emphatic 6-1 home defeat of Aldershot Town, and this past Sunday produced a great fightback to force a replay in the FA Cup 1st Round. Gary Johnson's side came from two goals down against League One Derby County, with Will Goodwin salvaging a draw deep in stoppage time in front of a packed out crowd at Plainmoor.
Striker Goodwin joined the The Gulls on a six month loan from Stoke City in the summer and his goal on Sunday was his 5th in all competitions so far this term. Fellow forward Aaron Jarvis, who joined after release from Scunthorpe United in the close season, will also be coming into the game in good form after netting a hat-trick in the victory over Aldershot.
Vastly experienced manager Gary Johnson led Torquay to the play-off final the season before last as his side finished runner's up in the league, the club ultimately suffering defeat to Hartlepool in the final after a dramatic penalty shootout. Following a mid-table finish last term, Johnson will be hoping his side can kick on up the table as the campaign progresses, the manager having to re-build his squad in the summer following the departure of key player's Joe Lewis, Armani Little and Connor Lemonheigh-Evans, who have all moved on to Football League sides. Stalwart midfielders Asa Hall and Dean Moxey remain, and in addition to Will Goodwin, the loan market has also been used to bring in defenders Lucas Ness (Charlton Athletic) and Mark Ellis (Barrow) and midfielders Kieran Evans (Cardiff City) and Stephen Wearne (Grimsby Town).
With the first team not in action, attention turned to the Wanderers Ladies and B team over the weekend.
On Saturday afternoon the B team made it made back-to-back win's and clean sheets as second-half goals from Romeo Rowe and Ben Aubrey secured a 2-0 win against Chessington & Hook at Meadowbank, Wanderers consolidating 5th spot in the league table. After Tuesday night's league cup fixture with Merstham was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch, the B team return to home soil this Saturday as Oakwood are the visitors in a 3pm kick off.
After a two week break from action the Wanderers Ladies bounced back from their narrow FA Cup defeat with a 5-0 win over AFC Whyteleafe on Sunday as their league cup journey got under way. It was an afternoon where five different players got on the score sheet, with strikers Cherelle Khassal, Charlotte Keenan and Gemma Shepherd netting one each, Hannah Thomas scoring her first for the club and fellow midfielder Xayla scoring a superb free kick. The Ladies are back at Meadowbank this Sunday as they host Sport London E Benfica in the league in a 3:30 kick off, looking to avenge the 3-2 loss suffered just a few weeks ago in Middlesex.
B Team Manager Announcement
Dorking Wanderers can today announce the appointment of Ruben Gaspar as manager of the B team, stepping up from his previous role as Head Coach. Ruben's appointment has been made following the resignation of Rhys Barker on Monday, who has departed due to extenuating personal circumstances.
Since taking over the role in the summer, Rhys has made great progress with the team in both the league and cup competitions, managing a new set of players following the re-branding of the team in the close season and handing senior debuts to a number of Academy players already this term as well. The club would like to sincerely thank Rhys for his dedication and commitment and wish him all the very best in his future endeavours.
We congratulate Ruben on his appointment and look forward to further continuity and progression from the B team as the season moves forward.