Non-league: Kemp hopes Hamworthy are ready for early morning call

Bournemouth Echo: EARLY START: Hamworthy United boss Graham Kemp EARLY START: Hamworthy United boss Graham Kemp

MANAGER Graham Kemp hopes Hamworthy United’s players take it easy on the Christmas dinner to avoid a Boxing Day stuffing at the hands of former club Christchurch.

Hammers host Priory in the Wessex League’s morning kick-off (11.30am) with Kemp warning his in-form charges to be on their toes at the County Ground despite taking seven points from their past three games.

Kemp told the Daily Echo: “At this level, you don’t have a lot of call over the players at Christmas so it could be interesting from both teams’ point of view.

"But, with it being Christchurch, I would have thought the lads need no incentive to do well.

“There is a bit of spice there with players swapping between the clubs but it will be no different to other seasons in that respect.

“With the weather as it is, I doubt it will be a spectacle of football but players will naturally want to prove they made the right decision by following me, or from Christchurch’s point of view, by staying put.

“For 90 minutes, there will be an intense rivalry but we will all shake hands and have a drink afterwards.”

Meanwhile, opposite number Michael Cuffie described the showdown as “just another game” before adding he was only concerned with continuing Priory’s recent revival.

Christchurch have taken seven points from their past four league matches after a run of five straight defeats.

Cuffie said: “There is still a long way to go and the game (against Hamworthy) is important because we need to keep picking up points from the teams around us.

“It is nice to open up a big gap at the bottom and I would be very surprised if we got dragged into trouble but we have to be aware that it could still happen if we get sucked into a poor run of form.”

Hammers will be without Dominic Allen, while Priory have Lewis Proudley missing due to work commitments. Jordan Cole could make his Hamworthy debut against his former club if the paperwork is completed in time.

Elsewhere, Verwood boss Adie Arnold has a full complement of players for his side’s trip to Bournemouth Poppies (2pm) with new signing Dan Molyneaux and the returning Martin Smith available.

New signing Taffy Richardson could line up for Poppies.

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