• Versatile United midfielder's ready to share load

Versatile United midfielder's ready to share load

Wind the clock back to Hawke's Bay United's sole win in this season's New Zealand Football Championship on December 20.

Thirsty Whale Hawke's Bay United midfielder Gavin Hoy had a cracker of a game in the 2-0 victory against Waitakere United. It was obvious Hoy wasn't happy about being dropped from the starting XI the previous week.

"I had a point to prove and I made sure I made it," Hoy said on the eve of tomorrow's away seventh round ISPS Handa Premiership clash against Eastern Suburbs in Auckland.

It will be a surprise if he isn't in the starting XI. But the 28-year-old Canadian who is in his fourth season with United isn't countng his chickens.
"We'll see what the coaches think," Hoy said.

He pointed out adjustments have been made at trainings this week in the wake of top goal scorer Jesse Randall's departure to the United States and fellow forward Kailan Gould's transfer to Team Wellington.

Hoy enjoyed his pocket forward role against Waitakere United and is hoping for a similar role tomorrow.

"I like a more advanced role where I can create more opportunities. But I'm just happy to be anywhere on the field," Hoy said.

He didn't believe there was any extra pressure on the United forwards to perform in Randall's absence.

"As attacking players there is always that pressure to score. We have all created chances ... we just have to put them away," Hoy explained.

The two-season Napier City Rovers Central League player who has also played at that level for Team Taranaki and Wellington Olympic, Hoy, said tomorrow's visitors have done a bit of study on Eastern Suburbs.

"They are quite consistent with set formulas. We can prepare for it and I know we can win ... we just need to show up on the day."  

Hawke's Bay United co-coach Bill Robertson said hard-working midfielder Hugo Delhommelle is likely to return to action tomorrow after being out of action since round one.

Robertson is happy with how the squad has trained this week after a two-week break during the festive season.

"The lads had conditioning programmes to work on. They all came back refreshed and were keen to get back on the grass and build on the win we had before Christmas."

"At the same time we know Eastern Suburbs are a strong team and we're in for a tough time this weekend," Robertson added.   

The Hawke's Bay United squad for the 3pm match is:
Scott Morris, Jim Hoyle, Jackson Woods, Kaeden Atkins, Cory Vickers, Hugo Delhommelle, Karan Mandair, J C Mack, Gavin Hoy, Sam Pickering, Ahmad Othman, Cameron Emerson, Jarrod McKechnie, Fergus Neil, Sam Wall, Zac Madsen, Bill Robertson, Oscar Mason, Jorge Akers.