Thursday 19th February 2004

Abbott departs Fisher Athletic

Recent signing Wayne Burnett takes over as caretaker

Former England semi-professional international striker Gary Abbott has left Dr Martens League Eastern Division club Fisher Athletic as player-manager following Saturday's home defeat against Fleet Town.

Club chairman Richard Jones confirmed Abbott's departure had been by mutual consent.

Abbott, in his first managerial role, replaced Bob Davies earlier this season. However, after a promising start, Fisher went on a run of nine defeats in ten games, crashing out of their final cup competition with a home defeat against Wingate in the London Senior Cup.

During this time Abbott and strike partner Richard Brady found the net often, but Fisher were simply conceding more goals than the opposition.

The signing of goalkeeper Rob O'Hara and Al-James Hannigan brought stability to Fisher's back line, and the team became harder to beat, memorably coming back from two-down at Tonbridge Angels to secure a point.

However, the board including new director Sam Mudrolug, who has injected new funds in the club, felt that in order for Fisher's ambitions to be realised, a new manager was needed.

Recent signing Wayne Burnett takes over in a caretaker capacity, although Jones is keen to stress that a permanent successor has yet to be identified.

Despite Saturday's setback, Fisher are still in with an outside chance of promotion, and the board will do all they can, including signing new players, to try and clinch a spot in the end-of-season shake up.

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