Ossett Town out to hit ground running on return to action at Clitheroe

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Ossett Town manager Craig Elliott hopes his side can hit the ground running at Clitheroe on Saturday after a “frustrating” spell without a match.

Town, as with the majority of Evo-Stik Premier League teams, have seen their matches postponed over the last fortnight due to snowfall and freezing conditions.

For some, that break may have come as a blessing but for Town it came with Elliott’s men in a rich vein of form.

Town won three and drew one of their four league matches since Christmas and Elliott hopes his men can continue that form in Lancashire.

“It obviously hasn’t been ideal because we were in great form,” he said.

“We were playing well, not just in the matches we were winning but also in the ones before that. We got beat at Mossley, who are top, and should have got something from that match too.

“We’ll go to Clitheroe this weekend looking to continue that form.”

The recent cold snap also caused havoc with Town’s training schedule.

But Elliott has been able to get one positive from it, in having the time to bring in new faces to bolster his squad.

Winger Joe Thornton has signed from Staveley MW, while young Tadcaster Albion captain Ryan Qualter will boost Town’s defensive options.

The arrivals follow hot-on-the-heels of striker Carl Stewart, who signed earlier this mo nth from Northern Counties East League outfit Bridlington Town, where he was top scorer.

Stewart’s arrival came in response to an ankle injury suffered by key man Shane Kelsey, who will be sidelined for “six to seven weeks”.

“Shane’s injury is a big blow to us,” commented Elliott.

“He suffered it in the game against Farsley, during a challenge in which he was actually sent off in, so he’ll be a miss, hopefully he’ll be back before the end of the season.”

All three recent additions are set to be included in Town’s squad for the trip to fourth-placed Clitheroe.

The injury to Kelsey aside, Elliott has a fully fit squad for the Shawbridge clash.

“It’ll be a tough game for us this weekend because they’re up there at the right end of the table,” said Elliott.

“But hopefully we can carry on the form we had before the postponements and we should be a good match for then.”

He added: “We’re halfway through the season and I’m pleased with where we are, our aim is still the top ten.”

Ossett Albion welcome Lancaster City to Dimple Wells on Saturday, while Wakefield FC visit Ramsbottom United.