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Folkestone Invicta hope striker Johan ter Horst will be fit to face Worthing

By Steve Tervet

Folkestone are sweating on the fitness of Johan ter Horst ahead of their first game of the season on Saturday.

Ter Horst scored twice in a 7-2 win over Ashford last weekend and looked sharp around the penalty area.

But he was unable to complete the game and is now a doubt for Worthing's visit on the opening day of the Isthmian Premier.

Johan ter Horst playing for Folkestone against Ashford on Saturday Picture: Paul Amos
Johan ter Horst playing for Folkestone against Ashford on Saturday Picture: Paul Amos

Ian Draycott faces a month out with a broken wrist, meanwhile, and Nat Blanks has a groin problem.

Manager Neil Cugley said: "Johan came off at half-time so we'll have to see how that is before Saturday.

"Injuries have blighted his career a little bit so hopefully that's not too bad. It was a dead leg.

"But we've got not bad numbers at the moment. We're on a 17-man squad, which is quite high for us, so whatever happens we should be all right.

"Sam Hasler didn't play for nearly a year but he's getting his fitness back so that's good.

"Ronnie Dolan played the other day and wasn't available on Saturday but he'll train this week. We're waiting to see how fit they are.

"Whether you could risk both of them for 90 minutes, I don't know. That would be a hard call."

This will be Folkestone's fourth consecutive season in the Isthmian Premier, having finished fourth and sixth in the last two.

Johan ter Horst goes through one-on-one with Ashford keeper Sam Mott Picture: Paul Amos
Johan ter Horst goes through one-on-one with Ashford keeper Sam Mott Picture: Paul Amos

Invicta follow the Worthing clash with a trip on Wednesday to newly-promoted Cray Wanderers, who marched to the Isthmian South East championship last term.

"We're not quite ready," Cugley admitted. "It's always the same with players coming back from long injuries and other things.

"We're slowly getting there and I'm sure we'll be OK but we've got two really good tests in the first two games. I think Worthing and Cray will be right up there at the end so that'll show us where we are.

"I never shout my mouth off about our ambitions. We try to be competitive on the wage bill we pay.

"In an ideal world, we'd have somebody come in and do this and that but you don't, you get on with what you've got.

"I can be proud that, in my time at Folkestone, I've always tried to put a competitive team out and that's what I want to do again.

"I want us to play good football, be hard to beat and we'd love to be up near the top again.

"I'm looking forward to it. If you don't, that's when you should pack up.

"Everything's OK at the club, the pitch is lovely, we've got good support and a nice squad so off we go."

Read more: The latest sports news in Kent

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