March Town United boss Whaley hopes players’ self-belief will grow after beating Wisbech Town

MARCH Town United boss Brett Whaley hopes Tuesday’s 3-2 derby win over Wisbech Town will give his new players the self-belief to make this season a success.

The Hares’ morale-boosting victory over the Fenmen - who play one league higher than March - gave Whaley a perfect start to his pre-season preparations after Saturday’s friendly with Blackstones fell foul of the weather.

March’s hard-fought win saw Whaley’s new-look side lift the BKD Cup in his first game since returning to the GER for his second spell as Hares boss.

Whaley said: “We are a long way further forward than I actually thought we were going to be at this stage.

“I don’t think it was rustiness in the first half that caused us a problem - we just gave Wisbech a little too much respect.

“I think the lads at the start of the game didn’t believe they could win it so at half-time we told them to believe in themselves. The biggest positive from the win is the confidence that will come from it.”

Goals from Andy Wayte and a second-half brace from substitute Stu Anderson secured March’s win.

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However, the Hares’ victory owed much to summer signing ‘keeper Lea Jordan - facing his former Wisbech team-mates - who made at least five top-drawer saves in a sensational debut display.

Whaley said: “As the game went on Lea made saves that nobody else would. I said when we signed him we’d got the best ‘keeper around and I think his display proved it.

“I don’t want us to get ahead of ourselves because it’s only one game but it was definitely an encouraging start.”

March’s night was topped off by the unexpected return of inspirational captain Luke Pepper who came off the bench to play for the first time since injuring his knee in January.

However, flying winger Ash Brand looks doubtful to make the start of the season after missing the game with an abdominal problem.