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Story posted: Friday, 1st March 1991

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Gresley Rovers face a club in crisis when they meet Jewson Eastern League outfit Harwich and Parkstone in the FA Vase quarter-finals tomorrow.
Harwich manager Richie Powling was yesterday unable to name his side after being hit by suspensions and injury on the eve of a clash that could be the gateway to Wembley.

Out is suspended top scorer Ken Brown the former Birmingham City striker.

Out is strike partner Tony Welch, also suspended.

Out is former Ipswich Town midfielder Peter Grant, yet another suspension victim.

Out is skipper and central defender Neville Hodge, who faces a knee operation.

Doubtful is midfielder Nicky Lee with a muscle strain.

Doubtful is keeper Steve Mokley, who faces intensive treatment to injured ligaments after being carried off on Saturday with what was suspected at the time to be a broken leg.

To add insult to injury, Powling, the former Arsenal midfielder, also faces losing central defender Craig Oldfield, who is due to fly for a holiday in the United States on Saturday morning.

While Gresley are due to be relaxing in a Clacton-on-Sea hotel tonight Powling will be playing a numbers game with his squad that could force him to turn to a string of trial players.

Sure to play, though, is a defender who actually hails from South Derbyshire – left back Murray Osman, brother of Southampton’s former Leicester City, Ipswich and Englan defender Russell.

Osman, 25, was making his way towards a professional career with Ipswich when he snapped a knee ligament six years ago and was told he would never play again.

But the son of former Derby County player and Repton publican Rex Osman battled back to fitness with a steel pin in his leg and has been a regular in the Harwich side for the past two seasons.

Harwich also feature sweeper Michael Henry, who was sent off in extra time at Wembley when he appeared for Sudbury Town against Tamworth in the 1989 final, and the 19-year-old central defender Chris Tracey currently being trailed by Millwall.
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League Position
  Team P GD Pts
10 Highgate United 29 -3 38
11 South Normanton Athletic 26 0 37
12 Worcester City 26 11 36
13 AFC Wulfunians 31 -6 36
14 Coventry Sphinx 25 -19 34
15 Tividale 23 -4 27
16 Haughmond 29 -29 26
17 Racing Club Warwick 24 -29 24
18 Lye Town 28 -31 18
19 Gresley 26 -22 16
20 Selston 25 -38 13

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