Hatters captain Henry fully fit as jab helps to keep him ticking

Fully-fit full-back Ronnie Henry is back firing on all cylinders for the Hatters despite missing a recent game to recover from a ‘jab’, writes Mark Wood.

Friday, 15th November 2013, 3:00 pm
Tamworth v Luton Town. Photos by Liam Smith. wk 43.

The Town skipper missed the early part of the season after having a double hernia operation at the tail end of last season. And that jab helped him to finally put it behind him as he missed the 2-1 FA Cup defeat at Welling United last week.

He said: “That’s no problem, I only had that because the surgeon knew there was probably going to be a reoccurrence of the injury a little bit and I could have had it done before the Gateshead game, but the gaffer wanted me to play in the league games and said miss the FA Cup game to have it done because I had to have eight days rest and that’s just to make the injection work really and it was fine Tuesday night and I have no reoccurrence of it now so I should be OK.”

The performance of both full-backs was praised by boss John Still as the Hatters triumphed 2-1 at Braintree Town for the first time on Tuesday night.

He said: “I have to say, Ronnie who had missed the last game, he had had an injection, and Scott Griffiths, the two full-backs I thought were terrific.

“I thought it was Scott Griffiths’ best game for us, I thought they were terrific considering they had the two young ones inside them, so it was very,very pleasing. But when it was all over, no more pleasing than the other wins.”

Henry was delighted with the win, having been vocal last season about Town’s inability to triumph in such encounters.

He said: “I only said it last year because I won the league a couple of years ago and it took that kind of effort, it took the whole squad to contribute and the lads are all coming on, the lads are all playing in the development games and winning games so they are coming on to the first team pitch and then performing as well, and like I said it’s not going to be pretty at times and we’ve got to go away and grind them results out on a Tuesday night or a Saturday.

“When it’s not going to be the best weather, those are the ones where we need to get them 1-0 wins, 2-0 wins away from home and they’ll get us to where we want to be.”

On what Still and the players have done to turn it around, Henry continued: “Just basically the hard work on the training ground and the mentality the gaffer’s got us into to be honest with you. He’s installed that winning mentality here as it shows throughout the development games and games in the first team.

“The lads all believe something can happen and I’m sure the fans do as well and we’re all just getting out heads down and working hard and we know we’ve got a long way to go and we’re going the right way about it.”

The withdrawal of gnarly veteran Steve McNulty from the defence at the Iron was a big blow, but Henry was full of praise for youngsters Alex Lacey and Andy Parry who saw the Hatters through.

He said: “They done very well. It’s hard to lose someone like Macca at that stage of the game, but Paz and Lace done well, because obviously we conceded straight away after we scored, and then the last 15 minutes were tough, but like I said the two lads did very well, only for a deflected goal I think it could have been a convincing win.”

And Henry believes that victory has shown Town’s true title-winning credentials, but knows they will have to continue to repeat that form if they are to realise their ambitions.

He added: “We’re going to have many more of them on a Tuesday night away from home, the pitch ain’t great, the atmosphere ain’t the best and we’ve got to get results there.

“We knew before the game to be serious contenders in this league we have to win them games on a Tuesday night away at them kinds of places and it was a great result to be honest with you for the lads and a well earned three points and the lads put all the work in and the rewards were there in the end.”