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Diss Town hoping derby clash with Harleston Town can kick-start positive run of form

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Joint boss Mark Sutcliffe feels that his Diss Town side have not been enjoying the rub of the green in recent weeks.

Injuries, suspension and unavailability has robbed Sutcliffe and fellow manager Matt Coote of some of their key players during what is now a four-match sequence without a victory in the Thurlow Nunn League First Division North.

Ordinarily a trip to league-leading neighbours Harleston Town tomorrow (3pm) would not be high on the managers’ wishlist, but it’s the sort of fixture Sutcliffe believes could ‘kick-start’ a positive run.

Matt Coote (left) and Mark Sutcliffe (right) will take their Diss side to league-leading Harleston tomorrow. Picture: Mark Bullimore
Matt Coote (left) and Mark Sutcliffe (right) will take their Diss side to league-leading Harleston tomorrow. Picture: Mark Bullimore

“We feel like the results are close,” said Sutcliffe, who has been in charge since early September.

“We’ve been without a lot of players and coming up against some top sides like Sheringham and Norwich CBS.

“But the performances have been pretty encouraging and we need to build on that in terms of results.

“We know Harleston are a top team with some top players, but if we can pick up a positive result it’s the sort of thing that could kick-start us.”

Diss are set to be boosted for the short trip down the A143 by the return of Owen French, Kehan Whitby and James Bemrose.

Sutcliffe added: “Any side would miss players like that. Owen has not played for us yet because of injury and Kehan was unavailable last week.

“James is also back from suspension, which give us a massive boost. Losing Ryan Gibbs (moved to Ely City) hit us hard, so when you take James’ goals out as well, it’s going to make it tricky.”

The management duo have been active in recent weeks, bringing in Josh Parry, Adam Bennett and, most recently, Lagshan Sivakumar.

The latter has joined from lower-league Mattishall, for whom he has scored three goals this term. And Sutcliffe has revealed that further additions could be in the offing.

“We needed to bring in the likes of Josh and Adam because of the injuries, but they’re also good players and have been good signings,” he said. “Lagshan is also someone who we think is going to make a good impact.

“We might sign a few more players as well because it’s a young squad that could do with a bit more experience.”

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