JOHN Chand reckons that Lewis Brooks’ surprise Holbeach United exit will keep his players on their toes.
The talented left-sider was released by the Tigers on Monday – and his since joined UCL Premier Division rivals Boston Town.
Brooks – who signed up for a second stint with the Tigers over the summer – was unfortunate to suffer an injury against Deeping Rangers in an FA Vase tie back in October, which ultimately cost him his place in the starting eleven.
Holbeach boss Chand, who considers Brooks a fine player and an even better friend, admits he can’t guarantee anyone a place in his side.
“Looking at it on paper, Lewis was vying with Adam Jackson and Phil Newton for a place in the starting line-up,” said Chand, who has guided his side to third in the table. “With that kind of competition, nobody is sure of a start.
“Lewis was first choice earlier in the season, but injury and work commitments saw him slip behind Jacko, who hasn’t looked back.
“It was the same with Loz Lambley and Nick Brown, who have also gone to Boston.
“We have similar competition all over the pitch and everybody knows they’re only one injury, suspension or missed game away from losing their place.
“Competition is healthy at any level of football.”
Chand will face the best kind of selection dilemma at Yaxley on Saturday (3pm), with a fully-fit squad to choose from.
Midfield maestro Paul Goodhand did miss Wednesday’s 2-1 League Cup quarter final win iver Deeping at Carter’s Park, but should return at Leading Drove.
Striker James Wilson will also be involved, with the Tigers extending his loan from Lincoln City for a further month.
The Cuckoos have proved something of a bogey side for Chand during his Holbeach tenure, but currently find themselves in a relegation dogfight.
Chand added: “I’ve always found Yaxley a tough game. They’ve really turned things around lately, Clippo is working his magic there.
“They’re not to be underestimated and, but for a keeper error in the game at Carter’s Park, would have got a result.”