Maynard: 'Our squad and spirit won us the game vs Bromley'
Stuart Maynard paid tribute to the attitude of the substitutes and the contribution they made off the bench as the Stones got the season off to a flying start with a win over FA Trophy winners Bromley.
The Stones were 2-1 down when the manager decided to call on the depth of his squad to bring on Jaydn Mundle-Smith, Rhys Browne and Dom Hutchinson in the space of 14 second-half minutes. The changes energised the team on a hot afternoon, and Browne won and converted the penalty that made it 2-2 and then Jack Cook popped up with the winner.
"Everyone was outstanding today and I said in the week that it isn't the starting XI that brings you success – it's a squad that does," said Maynard. "Today was proof of that. The lads that came on made a massive difference and made a real impact. Dom came of the bench and made a real impact, Browney came on, got the penalty and scored and Mundle-Smith has been out injured in pre-season and he came on and was excellent."
Olufela Olomola was selected from the start for his league debut for the Stones and he took just 16 minutes to get off the mark.
"All the lads have settled in really well but especially Fela," said Maynard. "He's a really big character in the group already and it was a great controlled finish from him, which the keeper made an unbelievable save from and then he's got a great rebound. Fela has got real quality."
The win was the perfect way to kick off a third successive National League season and means the Stones have won five of their last eight games at this exalted level.
"We are delighted with the three points," said Maynard. "We have a good, young, hungry group. They leave everything out there and they really took on the information we gave them this week really well. It's a credit to the lads. We give them the info but they've got to go and deliver it on the pitch. They delivered it today. We would like to have been a bit more fluent in possession but it's about the three points.
"Winning games brings confidence. We've won a game and we deserved to win it. And that's a Bromley side who I think will be right up there in the mix. They are not many more dangerous going forward in the league than them. We'll take the confidence from this into Eastleigh away on Saturday. It's a great win and we'll take the momentum into next week."
• Pictures by Jon Taffel