PHIL Simkin is prepared to sacrifice the Magpies’ opening pre-season friendly if it means preserving the pristine state of the Avenue Stadium pitch.

Like so many other places across the region, the county town venue felt the full force of Saturday’s torrential rain.

And if the recent wet weather continues, Dorchester’s manager admits he will be forced to cancel this weekend’s visit of Christchurch in order to help protect the surface ahead of the new Blue Square Bet South campaign, Simkin said: “I am concerned about playing the game on Saturday and wrecking the pitch.

“At this moment in time it’s in serious doubt. I have already warned Graham Kemp at Christchurch that it could be off, which would be a shame, but we do not want to wreck the pitch before we start the season.

“We will leave the decision until tomorrow but if there is any doubt then we won’t play the game – we will just train instead.

“The pitch has got as good a growth on it this year as I have ever seen and I do not want to damage it, as the pitch is massively important to us in regards to the way we want to play.

“The better the surface, the better our results will be.”

Following this Saturday’s game with Christchurch, the Magpies entertain Exeter City on Tuesday night.

Meanwhile, Dorchester Town Under-18s are on the lookout for new players ahead of the upcoming South West Counties League campaign.

Trials will be held this Saturday, starting at 10am, for all those interested.

Contact the football club on 01305 262451 for further details.