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Page last updated at 09:21 GMT, Friday, 27 November 2009

Bradley Pritchard column

By Bradley Pritchard
Tamworth midfielder

Bradley Pritchard
There will be a large laundry bag in the boot of my Clio when I travel down

On going home to see his parents

This week was a real mixture. After the win on Saturday we were delighted with the way we managed to battle for the win.

I don't think we had much of the possession or created as many chances as Ebbsfleet but just the manner in which we defended was something to be proud of. After the game, one of their players summarised it pretty well, "smash and grab".

I smiled because, even though I understood what he meant I didn't really empathise. This was until the final whistle on Tuesday night went. I fully understood Ebbsfleet's players' frustrations then.

The football we played in the first half deserved a goal or two, but going in at half-time level only helped them re-group and it slowed down the momentum we had built up. After that, we weren't as effective in the second half, and paid for it.

We could look at different factors, like the weather, the referee and luck, but I don't think we were clinical when we had the chances. Saying that, it's always good to know that despite the loss, we were never dominated or outclassed by Altrincham.

That has to be a positive because we are aware that we have the capability to compete with everyone in the league.

To rub salt in the wounds, the Altrincham players must have heard that Wallie puts on a decent spread of food post-match, because they were in the clubhouse quicker than any of our team. They certainly made sure they'd be well fed for the journey back home.

If it wasn't for the one lonely chip squashed in the corner of the tray, I wouldn't have known there were any at all. Jake [Sheridan] and Shawsy [Tom Shaw] had to scramble for the remaining mushy peas.

In the infamous 'circle' Wrighty [Nick Wright] was voted to sing. I don't know why the boys decided it because he always refuses to sing.

He ended the training session in such a foul mood, confirming his tag as the 'angriest man in football'

On Richard Tait

So instead of serenading us, he just agreed to pay a fine. It ended up a bit of an anti-climax to be honest but it was his birthday so we let him off.

The circle is fast becoming the most hated exercise in training because a couple of bad touches can psychologically damage you for the rest of the session. There have been many times when I start off well and then end up hiding, but with the 'circle', the last thing you should do is try to hide.

Taity [Richard Tait] is an example of such an occurrence. He ended the training session in such a foul mood, confirming his tag as the 'angriest man in football'.

This Saturday we're playing down south again. I normally look forward to these games because it means I can go home for a few days. With our training and match schedule, it means I have very little time to go see my family back home, but I take any opportunity I have.

As with all students past and present, there is the unofficial tradition insisting that when you go home to see your parents you need to take your laundry with you, so there will be a large laundry bag in the boot of my Clio when I travel down.

It seems like such a long time since I've lived at home, but I still remember how good it was not to worry about cooking dinner or any other chores that you're obliged to do when you live on your own.

I always try and sneak some Sunday roast back with me when I leave, to really accentuate the benefits of being back at home. My mum's identified this pattern so she now seems to cook just that bit extra for such a purpose.



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