FORMER Christchurch boss Michael Cuffie will have to wait for his return to the dugout – despite being confirmed as Bournemouth Poppies’ new assistant-manager.
Victoria Park number one Ken Vaughan revealed that Cuffie would take up the post with immediate effect, although a four-match touchline ban carried over from last season will keep the former Priory man in the stands for now.
The Hurn Bridge club announced that the need to recover from major back surgery had forced Cuffie to end his testing 12 months in charge in May.
But Vaughan, who had been keen to recruit a right-hand man for some time, insisted that coming through last season’s baptism of fire would stand Cuffie in good stead for his new role.
Vaughan told the Daily Echo: “Considering he lost half his side as soon as he went in, I thought Mike did quite well over there.
“It was always going to be tough following Graham (Kemp) but he kept them up quite comfortably in the end so you could say he did his job.
“He has the right credentials for working here because, over the past few years, we have ended up rebuilding the side every summer.
“He played at a decent level and has a real passion for the game so he has plenty to offer.
“I think he will be an asset to us.”
Poppies begin their Wessex League Premier Division campaign at much-fancied Winchester City on Saturday (3pm) with ex-Christchurch pair Marc Fairbrother and Connor Doe expected to feature.
Poppies: (from) Vaughan, Martinez, Burgis, Jacobs, Robinson, Hales, Fairbrother, Doe, Saadi, Pekun, Phillips, Bassiriki, Pearce, Cooper, Khider, Nhemachena.
- Micky Hubbard has dual-registered with Hamworthy United in time for Saturday's tough trip to Horndean (3pm).
The midfielder finished last season at the County Ground but has trialled with Poole with the hope of rekindling his Southern League career.
Hammers: (from) Ackerman, Yelland, Legg, Donachy, Haysom, Blackburn, Allen, Hubbard, Hester, Osborne, Cook, Warren, Price, Martin, Penny, Cole, Walker.
- Lymington kick off their Wessex League campaign at Fawley tomorrow (7.45pm).
Lymo: (from) Williamson, Stacey, Sullivan, Lloyd, Marden, Ansell, Kenna, Ritchie, Mead, Davis, Tate, Strickland, Man, Rogers, James.