Chris Nunn has challenged his youthful Biggleswade Town side to take their good form into Boxing Day’s derby against Hitchin.
The Waders host their BetVictor Southern Premier Central rivals on Boxing Day, on the back of four straight victories and three clean sheets in as many matches.
“For years I had trouble beating them, they were a thorn in my side,” manager Nunn said of Hitchin, currently 17th in the table.
“But we did the double over them (in 2017-18) and last year we took four points off them.
“They’re a big club and I’m a little surprised where they are to be honest.
“It’s a local derby and I think that first goal will be crucial.
“We’re a young side, five teenagers started on Saturday, and they’ve certainly got more experience.”
Following Boxing Day’s clash, Biggleswade visit second-place Peterborough Sports on New Year’s Day (both 3pm) and host Bromsgrove Sporting, currently third, on January 4.
“We’re still a long way off the finished article,” Nunn added.
“We’ve got Hitchin, then Peterborough and Bromsgrove.
“Come the middle of January there could be a few young lads licking their wounds. But it’ll be interesting finding out where we are.”
Indeed, Nunn believes tests like these could be the making of his squad.
“It’s really important to have tough challenges,” he added. “We want tough challenges, and they’re nice to have when you’re eighth and not 18th.
“If we win our next two it puts us in the mix. They’ll be a good test of character and I’ll learn a lot more about those boys.”
Trey Charles and James Peters secured a 2-0 win at basement boys Redditch on Saturday.
“To be honest, I thought we were awful first half,” Nunn added.
“We were on the 3G pitch and in the first half we were too direct.
“I think we were lazy at times. You don’t just turn up at the team bottom of the table in any division and expect to win.
“But we scored early in the second half and, from then on, we controlled it.”