WEYMOUTH manager Bobby Wilkinson has explained the absence of goalkeeper Jared Thompson from Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Aveley.

Thompson has started all five games since joining the Terras in November, saving three penalties and keeping one clean.

However, he was replaced by the returning Gerard Benfield against Aveley after suffering a thigh strain near the end of the FA Trophy penalty shootout win at Dover.

Wilkinson told Echosport: “He pulled his thigh last week but carried on.

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“He just couldn’t get through training. He tried but we had the big man back, so I was really pleased.

“When you think last year I had little goalkeepers and now I’ve got two giants, so I’m really pleased for Gez and gutted for Jared.”

Wilkinson also expressed hie regret for Charlie Rowan (calf), who could be a doubt for Braintree on Saturday and the Torquay United trip on Tuesday.

“We’re also devastated for Charlie to do that right at the end of the warm-up before we go in,” Wilkinson added.

“But we don’t moan about it, we tweaked a few things. Quick turnaround and let’s go.

“My team are fit, organised and we’ve given ourselves a chance.

“We were fitter than them on Saturday because we’re working hard behind the scenes.”