DAVE Anderson admitted it had been a massive gamble to pitch match-winner Rob Wolleaston in Saturday’s crucial win over Enfield.
The former Chelsea youngster, now 34, came off the bench to transform Borough’s fortunes, playing a vital role in two other goals before scoring the vital fourth as the hosts – fortunate to be level at the interval – ran out 4-2 winners.
However, Wolleaston had only been on the bench as a last resort after limping out of last Monday’s derby defeat to Wealdstone with a hamstring problem.
And Anderson knows his punt on his skipper could have gone horribly wrong.
He said: “Rob has got a sort of tight hamstring problem. We are not sure if it is his hamstring or his back and that is why he came off on Monday and we were hoping to leave him until Thursday he was that iffy – but needs must and you have to take a gamble sometimes.
“We had Jimmy Burgess warmed up as well, because we were not sure if Rob would go five minutes or the 45 minutes.
“So we were aware of that, but he changed the game. His quality changed the game, setting up two goals and scoring one.”
Anderson said there was more than an element of doubt surrounding Wolleaston’s match-clinching fourth goal, but claimed his side had been owed some good fortune over recent weeks.
“I thought his goal was offside, but we have had some awful decisions against us, so you get some you lose some,” he said.
Wolleaston was not the only inspired substitution by Anderson and his coaching team on Saturday. Experienced campaigner Burgess also entered the fray at a critical stage of the second half, to provide some screening protection for an until then overworked back four.
While the genial Irishman admits his team can play better he knows that, at the business end of the season, it is results that count.
“We do things the hard way sometimes, but I’d rather win the hard way than lose the easy way,” he added.
“Our performance was not magnificent, but how many teams in the position we are would like to be able to say we didn’t play well, but won?”