NON-LEAGUE: Stebbing set for first Yaxley start

Phil Stebbing, seen here lifting the Hinchingbrooke Cup for Peterborough Northern Star, could make his first appearance of the season for Yaxley.

Phil Stebbing, seen here lifting the Hinchingbrooke Cup for Peterborough Northern Star, could make his first appearance of the season for Yaxley.

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Marquee summer signing Phil Stebbing could finally make his long-awaited Yaxley debut against United Counties Premier Division leaders Leicester Nirvana at In2itive Park tomorrow (January 23, 3pm).

Cuckoos boss Ian Benjamin was delighted to entice Stebbing away from Peterborough Northern Star at the end of last season, but a cartilage injury has kept the highly-rated striker out of action all season.

He will join a Yaxley squad in terrific form. They’ve won their last three Premier Division games as last weekend’s 3-1 success at Sileby Rangers followed impressive victories over top-five sides Holbeach United and Newport Pagnell.

“We’re playing with a lot of confidence right now,” Benjamin enthused.

“The players are learning what I want from them and I am learning from them as well. There is a real togetherness as a result and that’s important if you want success.

“The team spirit is excellent and we’ve started to string some excellent results together.

“We were comfortable for most of the game last week and we were very good in beating two very strong sides before that.

“We will probably need to step up again this Saturday as Nirvana are a powerful team.

“They beat us 4-0 at their place earlier in the season and they were very impressive.

“But we are a much better team now and having Phil Stebbing back would be a great boost.

“He was a star signing for us in the summer so it’s been a real blow not to have him available. Mind you he was supposed to play last weekend, but his car broke down on the way to the game!”

Yaxley’s recent run is even more worthy as they’ve been without captain and top scorer Dan Cotton. He’s been absent with a hamstring injury, but could return to the squad on Saturday.

Deeping Rangers, fresh from an excellent win against unbeaten Premier Division side AFC Kempston Rovers in the Hinchingbrooke Cup on Tuesday (January 20), host Peterborough Northern Star in a UCL derby tomorrow (3pm).

Wisbech are the next team to try and end Kempston’s long unbeaten league run (it currently stands at 23 matches). They are at Kempston tomorrow.

Peterborough Sports aim for a 21st win in 21 Division One matches at Wellingborough Whitworth tomorrow. They then tackle Thurlow Nunn Eastern Counties Premier Division high-fliers in a cracker of a Hinchingbrooke Cup quarter-final tie at PSL next Tuesday (January 26, 7.45pm).

Stamford AFC have a crunch Evo Stik Premier Division relegation battle against Whitby Town at the Zeeco Stadium tomorrow (3pm). A win for ‘The Daniels’ would move them above Whitby.

Spalding United occupy the final Division One South play-off place and tomorrow host Sheffield FC, the oldest football club in the world. Sheffield were formed in 1857.