NON-LEAGUE: Star confident they will avoid a Blackstones banana skin

Craig Smith will lead the Peterborough Northern Star attack at Blackstones in the FA Vase.

Craig Smith will lead the Peterborough Northern Star attack at Blackstones in the FA Vase.

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Peterborough Northern Star boss Seb Hayes has warned his players to be wary of a potential FA Vase banana-skin tomorrow (October 3).

The city side, who can be found in the bottom half of the United Counties League Premier Division, travel to top-six Division One outfit Blackstones for a second qualifying round tie at Lincoln Road in Stamford.

Hayes has won both games since taking sole charge of Star following the surprise resignation of co-boss Dom Genovese due to disputes with new directors at the Dogsthorpe-based club.

He said: “The Vase tie is going to be very tough. Blackstones have made some good signings recently and have been getting results.

“We will treat them with the utmost respect – the same respect we would give a Premier Division team - but we are going there to win the game.

“I’m sure some people will smell a shock and there will be a few having a flutter on Blackstones, but anyone who has watched us will have seen that we are a good side when at our best.

“We’ve won five of our last eight games and this upturn in form has been coming. We have a lot of very promising young players who are finding their feet.”

Star edged past Harborough last Saturday (September 26) thanks to a solitary Declan Rogers goal late on. They then beat Sleaford 3-1 on Tuesday night when Jacob Joyce, Craig Smith and Hayden Bream struck.

Hayes added: “We were dogged last Saturday and got the goal in the end. It was a reward for sticking to our task even though we had missed chances.

“We played very well in the first half against Sleaford on Tuesday (September 29). Our second goal was superb and probably the best team goal we’ve scored.

“It is the first time we have picked up back-to-back wins and we have also won three home games in a row so things are moving in the right direction.

“Myself and Dom always felt that would be the case. There was also going to be a few teething problems after putting together a new, and very young squad, but the potential of the players is now starting to be realised.

“Nothing has really changed other than I haven’t now got Dom there alongside me. It is no secret I was gutted he opted to resign as I really enjoyed working with him.”

Hayes has appointed Ian Jackson as a coach. Jackson was right-hand man to Chris Plummer during the club’s run to the quarter-finals of the FA Vase a few years ago.

UCL First Division side Bourne are alson in FA Vase action tomorrow. They have a tough game away at Swaffham.

Spalding United, the sole local survivors in the FA Cup, have an FA Trophy game at Newcastle Town.