Ashington’s former Bedlington midfielder Martin Brittain was hoping to receive the all clear this week which will make him available for selection for Saturday’s local clash.
The 29-year-old is nursing a thigh injury but is ‘praying’ that an ever improving situation will see him get the green light.
The schemer has been ruled out of the Colliers last two matches against West Auckland and Spennymoor and is desperate not to collect an unwanted hat-trick.
Brittain said at the weekend: “My thigh is a lot better and I’m hoping to be fit for Saturday but it’s all a matter of keeping fingers crossed.”
Brittain, who works for Cramlington-based Compass Developments, is adamant that his team-mates have the quality to win the contest, but reckons they need to adopt the right attitude and be up for the contest.
“They have a lot of young lads who are hungry so we will need to be on our guard and will need to maximise our efforts,” he said.
“Obviously we try to get our attitudes right for every game but it needs to be spot on for Saturday.
“I think we have enough quality in our ranks, and there is also the small matter of wanting to win it for the bragging rights.”
Brittain was in the Bedlington squad which led the Ebac Northern League first division table earlier in the season and also played in the reverse fixture back in August when Gary Middleton’s side ran out convincing 3-0 winners.
He added: “We started the campaign off really well but then the bubble burst.
“The derby defeat followed – which hurt – and I don’t want to go through that experience again.
“The Terriers are now in a dogfight and every game is a must win for them so they will be up for Saturday all right.
“They have lost a few experienced players but the youngsters have got good attitudes.
“It is all on the day and we have to make sure our minds are focused.”