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Gray to use Challenge Cup game to rest bodies
MARTIN GRAY will take the opportunity to rest many of his first-choice team when a much-changed Darlington team heads to Hebburn this evening in the Durham Challenge Cup.
Quakers sit top of the Northern League after winning seven of their first eight matches having played almost two games a week the season began a month ago.
With Saturday's trip to Dunston in mind, Gray will this evening use a team made up players who have not been regulars and untested teenagers in the preliminary round tie at Hebburn Sports and Social Club.
Goalkeeper Chris Porter is to make his first appearance of the season, replacing Jack Norton who Gray says has a knee injury.
The manager said: "He's playing with an injury and has done for four games, a knee injury.
"He's going in for a scan this week which we have been looking for him to get for the last few weeks.
"He's played on with a really sore injury for the last four weeks and hopefully we'll have more information this week coming. He won't play on Tuesday night."
There shall be no David Dowson or Arjun Purewal, both of whom suffered injuries in Saturday's 3-2 win over Billingham Town.
Striker Steven Johnson is also likely to get the nod, as will teenagers Andy White, David Mitchell and Connor Lowes who are among the youth team players given a chance in a competition that will see Hebburn and Darlington share the gate receipts.
Hebburn were promoted last season and have enjoyed a fine start to the campaign.
Paul Bennett's side are fifth in the table and last Tuesday won 5-2 at Billingham Town with Tony Stephenson scoring a hat-trick.
There must be a winner this evening so the match, a 7.30pm kick-off, could go to extra-time and penalties.