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Last Updated: Tuesday, 11 May, 2004, 13:38 GMT 14:38 UK
Cummings tips Swindon
By Mark Mitchener

Bournemouth defender Warren Cummings
Cummings is tipping Swindon to claim the last promotion place
Bournemouth defender Warren Cummings is tipping Swindon - and his close friend, striker Sam Parkin - to win promotion through the Second Division play-offs.

Cummings and Parkin were team-mates in the youth ranks at Chelsea.

The Cherries left-back told BBC Sport: "It's difficult to call, but with the strikers they've got, Swindon have got the firepower to go up.

"I rate them quite highly, and they've got goals in them from all over the pitch, so I'd fancy them."

The Scot earned a play-off final winner's medal with Bournemouth last season as they beat Lincoln 5-2 in the Division Three final, and has had an impressive season as the Cherries claimed ninth place.

He added: "I talk to Sam quite regularly, and I hope they do it for his sake.

"It'll be difficult for them to go to Brighton (in the second leg of the semi-finals) as they've got Leon Knight up front who can always produce the goods.

"Mark McGhee's done an excellent job, and he's got untold experience.

Swindon striker Sam Parkin
Parkin has scored 22 league goals for Swindon this season
"But I think Swindon have got the players to go there and get a result if they need to, especially if they can win by a couple of goals in the first leg."

Cummings feels the other play-off game - between Bristol City and Hartlepool - will also be closer than many people believe.

"On paper, City have got the stronger team but I just think when you've been up trying to get the (automatic) promotion place for so long, it's difficult then to go through the play-offs," he said.

"But saying that, they've got good enough players to do it.

"Hartlepool work extremely hard, and I know their manager (Neale Cooper) from my time in Scotland.

"They're solid at the back and they've got quite a lot of experience, so they've got a lot going for them as well.

"They've also got a bit of momentum, which counts for a lot going into the play-offs."

He added: "I think the final could be Swindon against Bristol City, although I don't think Hartlepool can be dismissed lightly.

"It wouldn't surprise me if any of them went up - but I think it'll be Swindon."

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