Rovers take on Bath City at our former temporary home, now called the Mayday Trust Park, on Friday evening (kick off 7.30pm).
Speaking about the game from the team’s training camp in Lincolnshire, manager John Ward said that he and his players were looking forward to their first pre season friendly.
“Of course we are all looking forward to playing again. It’s all about playing football, and that’s why we are training so hard.
“We are simply preparing to play games, and while nothing will really take the place of the opening fixtures of the season, the build up starts now.
“For all the work we can do here, and on the training ground back home, we can never replicate a match situation.
“Friday night’s game will be competitive, even though it’s a friendly. They will want to win as much as us, and we will want to do well ourselves.
“The players might also think the training won’t be as intense once the games start!
“In all seriousness, they are really looking forward to the game on Friday night and we are just trying to prepare them as best we can.”
The manager revealed that his squad will train at their Stoke Rochford Hall training base on Friday morning and travel down to Bath in the afternoon, and also said that he will give as many players as he can a run out during the match.
We need to make sure, primarily, that we have a strong and fit squad to play at Exeter in the opening game of the season . If the majority of the group are ready to play some part in Friday’s match, then we will have had a good three weeks behind us.”
A squad of 24 players are up in Lincolnshire, and although they have taken part in some of the training sessions and are close to recovery, it seems unlikely that Matt Gill or Garry Kenneth will be involved on Friday night.
The other 22 players who travelled to the training camp are; Jim Paterson, Steve Mildenhall, Mark McChrystal, Matt Harrold, Conor Gough, Michael Smith, Eliot Richards, Ollie Clarke, Josh Southway, Shaquille Hunter, Ollie Norburn, Ellis Harrison, Mitch Harding, Fabian Broghammer, Tom Parkes, Lee Brown, Tom Lockyer, Alefe Santos, David Clarkson, Ryan Brunt, Pat Keary, Jordan Goddard.
Bath City are also looking forward to the match and their Chairman, Manda Rigby, said: “We always love hosting you (Bristol Rovers), and are very grateful to Rovers to agreeing to the match. It will help our pre-season enormously, on the pitch, and also financially!”
Concessions/Under 18’s/Students £5
Under 16’s (with a paying adult) £1
All tickets pay on the gate with no sales in advance.