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Hackett: Still plenty of work to do
2:00pm Thursday 31st January 2013 in Football
GARY Hackett has warned Stourbridge the real battles are still come in the promotion race.
The Glassboys head into Saturday’s home clash with Bedford Town looking to make it seven wins from eight Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division games.
But while Hackett is delighted with their current form, he says things will only get tougher in the coming weeks.
He said: “I don’t think we are anywhere near the crunch time yet.
“The real battles are still to come, nobody has won anything yet and we have to prove we can last the course.”
Last Saturday’s 4-1 win over Hitchin Town moved Stour to within a point of second-placed Hemel Hempstead Town, though they still trail leaders Leamington by nine points.
Hackett will be hoping striker Luke Benbow can continue his excellent recent form.
The hitman bagged a hat-trick against Hitchin, including a wonderfully executed volley which put Stour 2-1 up.
Hackett said: “I saw Luke play against us for Redditch last year.
“He was only on the pitch for 20 minutes and was clearly playing with an injury.
“But I saw enough to know if we could get him fit we would have quite a player on our hands.
“He deserves an enormous amount of credit. He has got himself into excellent shape and is getting his just desserts for all his hard work.”
He added: “Anyone coming into this club as a centre forward was always going to be compared with Ryan Rowe.
“Luke is his own man and is stamping his own style on things. It’s not just his goals but his all-round game and overall performances.
“He’s a down to earth guy and we are very pleased with him.”
Hackett believes Stour will face a stern test against Bedford, who are also on a strong run.
He said: “Looking at their stats I think they are the league’s in-form team apart from us.
“They are just short of the play-offs so have plenty to play for. They are always tough to play against.”