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Whites poised to win championship in front of own fans

Andy Hessenthaler wants the clinch the title at Crabble
Andy Hessenthaler wants the clinch the title at Crabble

Dover are hoping to pop the champagne corks on Saturday in celebration of one of the most memorable seasons in their history.

The Ryman League Premier Division leaders will clinch the championship in front of their own supporters if they beat Sutton and nearest rivals Staines draw at Hastings.

Should Dover draw and Staines lose, Whites would still take the title.

The slide rules came out on Tuesday after Staines drew 0-0 with Horsham.

“We wanted to clinch the title and promotion in front of our own supporters and now we have that opportunity,” said Whites’ manager Andy Hessenthaler.

“The chairman hasn’t said anything but I think we’re getting in a few bottles of champagne. But the most important thing is that we perform on the day.”

First-choice goalkeeper Preston Edwards returns after last weekend’s withdrawal before the game at Billericay. Edwards, on loan from League 1 Millwall, hurt his back during training with the Lions. With John Whitehouse injured, his absence left the club without cover.

Hessenthaler responded by signing former Margate goalkeeper Scott Chalmers-Stevens on a non-contract basis on the eve of the match.

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