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Dover Athletic assistant manager Nicky Southall reacts to the 1-1 draw with Boreham Wood in the National League

Dover assistant manager Nicky Southall praised the efforts of their threadbare squad on Tuesday night.

Whites picked up a creditable 1-1 draw at home to in-form Boreham Wood thanks to TJ Bramble's second-half leveller.

TJ Bramble - scored his first league goal for Dover on Tuesday night. Picture: Keith Gillard
TJ Bramble - scored his first league goal for Dover on Tuesday night. Picture: Keith Gillard

Missing six players still in isolation due to Covid-19 plus the suspended Josh Passley, Dover bounced back despite only returning to the training ground at the start of the week.

"The effort by the boys was fantastic," beamed Southall. "We hadn't trained for 10 days, was back training for two days in the lead-up to the game and in fairness I thought they were outstanding.

"They are a good solid team and got manager-of-the-month but we trained well and were coming in off the back of the Dagenham performance.

"We had six out with Covid, we had the bare bones out there and they gave everything for Dover."

Southall was full of praise for 19-year-old Bramble, who filled in at an unfamiliar wing-back role and popped up with his first league goal for the club having already netted in the FA Cup tie at Yeovil.

"it was a fantastic goal," said Southall. "It was a great run for the goal and it reminded me of my playing days in some ways as I used to play in that position and get forward.

"He played in Gillingham's youth team as a right-back a few times. He has all the attributes, is quick, a great size and is good with the ball at his feet. He went down with cramp but you can't blame (any of) the lads for that."

Dover have still only played 11 league matches and Southall added that good football at Crabble is difficult with the pitch in such poor condition - a combination of training on it last year and the groundsman having time on furlough.

"Everyone is really frustrated with the stop start scenario to the season," he added.

"It's not ideal but you've got to give the boys every credit, they gave everything.

"The pitch doesn't help us, we want to play at a quick tempo and the pitch doesn't allow that.

"We've got to get on with it, it's not ideal but it's only our sixth home game this season. I know (it's because of) circumstances with (the) groundsman on furlough not being here week in, week out."

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