Coach admits shortage of players is ‘desperate’

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HAWICK coach Derek Armstrong has vowed to play himself against Morgan Academy tomorrow as the Greens’ player shortage reaches crisis point.

Ahead of the trip to Tayside for the Scottish Cup clash, Armstrong admitted on Wednesday that the situation was “desperate”.

The long list of absentees includes Michael Robertson, Steven Anderson, Greg Anderson, Ryan Hogg, Gavin Petrie, Neil Douglas and Rikki Kiore, while there are doubts over the availability of captain Bruce McNeil.

Teenager Lewis Mallin has been drafted in from the YM, but Armstrong, who played for the 2nds last season against Cartha Queens Park, is facing a selection headache.

He told the Hawick News: “It’s desperate, but we just have to get on with it. We’ll have a team. I’ll play if I have to. It’s not as if we’re not going to be able to fulfil the fixture.

“It’s just one of those things where there’s players ill, injured or unavailable. But there’s no point moaning about it, we’ll just have to battle on.”

Victory tomorrow will guarantee Hawick a place in the quarter-finals of the competition after previous wins over Kelso and Selkirk.

And while Premier Division Three outfit Morgan are currently struggling in the lower half of their league table, Armstrong is taking nothing for granted.

He added: “Everybody thinks this is going to be easy, but it won’t. It’s a difficult place to go, I’ve been there with the YM, and they’ll be wanting to take the scalp of Hawick.”