DORCHESTER Town Reserves’ manager Rich Robson hopes his side will have a “renewed vigour” as they embark on their first fixture of 2018.

The Magpies’ second string travel to Basingstoke Town in the John Stimpson Memorial Shield tonight (7.45pm) looking to halt a run of two losses.

Robson told Echosport he is targeting a response to those defeats and aims to make a “statement of intent” against the Dragons.

He said: “I’m hoping this year we’ll have a renewed vigour and character about us. (In) our last two games we lost away (at Merley) and (against Hamble) in the other cup.

“So it’s a chance to put things right and make a statement of intent, because I’d be a bit gutted to be just left with the league. We’re one of the bigger clubs in the league and we really need to show that in the second half of the season.”

Robson added that he was “buzzing” in anticipation of resuming the season against a Basingstoke side his outfit beat 4-3 in the league in August.

“With the nature of reserve football we’ll probably have a completely different squad. We had Jamie Beasley playing in that game, so it will be a battle of two completely different sides. I’m buzzing and raring to go, so I hope the players are too.”

Captain Jamie Rawlings is unavailable for the next month, but Ryan Dovell returns from an ankle injury, while last season’s skipper Simon Proffitt’s chances of playing are rated at “70-30”.