The latest from Bristol Rovers Chairman Nick HiggsIt really is shaping up to be an exciting end to the season, and the race for that coveted automatic promotion spot has changed hands again since my last notes.
Two weeks ago, we were two points ahead of second placed Barnet, who had a game in hand. Much to the disappointment of everyone, we lost against Eastleigh, but remained in pole position as Barnet also suffered a home defeat that afternoon.
Last Saturday, against FC Halifax, I thought we might have come away with all three points even though we were two goals down at half time. A battling second half display saw us hit back to draw level and almost score a dramatic winner in stoppage time.
The way the players responded to being behind showed what a determined group we have here and their fitness levels, on a very heavy pitch, were again outstanding and testament to the hard work they put in on the training ground with Darrell and his staff.
However Barnet's win saw us drop down to second place and on Tuesday they played their game in hand, ironically against FC Halifax at The Shay.
I followed that game with great interest, and when they went ahead in the second half it seemed that they would extend their lead at the top to three points. However a very late goal by the home side means that going into this weekend's fixtures they are only one point ahead of us.
There are other sides involved in the race for pole position, of course, and none of them can be discounted at this moment in time, so it promises to be a tense run in.
Chris Lines, who joined us on loan last week, made his second Rovers debut at The Shay and was very influential, particularly in the second half. He's played his football in the Championship and League One since leaving us four years ago and returns having furthered his football education at Sheffield Wednesday, MK Dons and Port Vale and I know he wouldn't have dropped out of the league to play for any other club.
It's good to have him back with us and good, also, to have Jermaine Easter fit again and back in the squad and I'm sure that he and Chris have a major part to play in these final weeks of the season.
Another great turnout of travelling supporters at Halifax once again made me very proud of our football club and I know that our support is the envy of every club in this league. Thank you all for continuing to back Darrell and the team in such great numbers, both home and away.