Worksop Town midfielder, James Baxendale, has spoken out following a 3-0 win over Walsall at the Windsor Foodservice Stadium on Tuesday night.
“I thought it was good,” Baxendale said. “They are a full-time team and they will have had intense training so for us it was a bit of a gamble to put ourselves up against it and see what we have got.
“They will probably come away and say that we were combative but I felt that we just moved the ball better than them. I am really proud of every one of the lads today – we worked hard, we got three goals and are going in the right direction.
“We designed our pre-season to give us a test against every opposition that we may face. These boys who turned up today will probably move the ball better than anyone we are going to come up against but I thought we stood up to it really well.
“We are going in the right direction and – to win 3-0 against a League Two side just before the start of the season – you cannot really complain about that.”
The 28-year-old chalked up more than a century of appearances for Walsall between 2012 and 2016, but has not had the chance to take on his former colleagues since his departure.
“It is the first time since I left that I have played against them – of course, it is just a friendly, so it is not quite the same. I have enjoyed it, and my dad came to watch today. I spent a lot of good years at Walsall and I enjoyed it but I cannot deny that I am really pleased that we beat them.
“For me, you just have to take it as another game. I have got a few old friends at the club, so I will be sending some texts out in a bit – an “I’m still around, don’t forget about me” sort of thing! The main thing is that we are all in there and building in the right direction.
“There is a good atmosphere in the group and you can tell that there is excitement around the place.”
Looking ahead to the final clash of pre-season – a home fixture against Kettering Town – Baxendale said, “we have built and built up to the point where we want to be bursting at the seams for the first game of the season. Hopefully, Kettering will be another example of us building again.
“We want to give a good performance and we want to get another win because wins build momentum.
“We are going to go out there to win on Saturday. It will be a challenge that we may face on a regular basis in the league so it is a chance for us to get some more goals and stamp our authority on the games.”