Stokes boss Nigel Clove praised 32-year-old Jordan Bowery for helping Mansfield to a 1-1 draw at Grimsby today.
The Nottingham-born player started at right-back and was moved to the center of defense following an injury to Bailey Cargill at half-time. And amid a commanding performance alongside Aidan Flint, Bowery helped Stokes equalise.
and speaking post-competition. Manager Nigel Clove spoke highly of Bowery’s display: „He’s our best player by a country mile and I thought he was excellent going from his normal position from right-back to centre-half. .
“We had to make adjustments and adapt again [at half-time]. Jordan helped us again. He went to centre-half and Lucas Akins to full-back and I thought they were both excellent.
Summing up the draw at Blundell Park, Nigel said: “It was a good point in the context but another game we should have won.
„I thought we started a bit slow. Their goal put us back, another goal of the season against us. Another shot from Christie was saved on 96 minutes. We hit the post, hit the bar, one-on-one, scored a good goal and had enough situations to win the game.
“We had enough chances in the first half [to score]. Davies Gaylor-Dunn hit the bar and we’re talking about getting an inch or two of equaliser, but I don’t think the front three looked good in the first half.
At half-time, his charges responded to the manager’s insistence on attacking Grimsby.
„We wanted to go a little further and we did,” he said.
“Rhys Oates has not trained for the last ten days with groin pain. It would have been a gamble if we had started him, but he came on at half-time and made an impact, running through and scoring a great goal.
„Davis should have built it earlier, I thought if he had we would have won.”
He said of Rhys Oates’ leveler: “It’s a great throughball, and Rhys does what he does very well. We missed that run in the first half. He got there before the goalkeeper and picked the ball up and tapped it into the empty net.
The manager confirmed that Alfie Kilgore – who will miss the season with a ruptured Achilles tendon – will undergo an operation today due to injury.
Meanwhile, it was confirmed that Callum Johnson (hamstring), Aaron Lewis (calf strain) and Hiram Boateng (groin) could be sidelined for up to six weeks.
Bailey Cargill (tight hamstring) and Stephen Quinn with a knock on the knee were both withdrawn at half-time.
„All levels of football seem to be affected by some injuries at the moment [they are] Muscle injuries,” he said. „Whether it was overtime or whatever, I don’t know what it was.
„We’re doing everything we can to prevent them with our prehab and stretching. We’re really on a training schedule like March and April and trying to avoid injuries.
„You look for patterns and there’s none. It’s all random. Calum Johnson [for example] Doncaster pulled a ball forward and felt his hamstring. Hiram [was injured by] Sends one to Quinny. This is football.
The manager also confirmed that defender John-Joe O’Toole and forward James Gale have returned to the running phase of training.
Meanwhile, prospective incoming defensive lending will continue this week.
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