Gary Hamilton was very disappointed with his team’s performance in the League Cup on Tuesday night when they crashed out 4-0 away to Ards. “In my opinion,” he told us, “our performance at Seaview on Saturday was the best in my five and a half years in charge but Tuesday night was arguably one of the worst, if not the worst, in that time.”

Ballymena 1 v Glenavon 6 Photos by Maynard Collins

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“We have to look at the bigger picture,” Gary went on, “the lads had put in a lot of effort and energy against Crusaders and then they’re playing again on a 4G pitch on Tuesday and, I’ll be honest, it’s been a long time since I saw Rhys and Singy and Bobby and Josh and Caolan look as tired and lacking in energy on the pitch and that might have played a part in it, the two games in the four days on that type of surface.”

“Hopefully they’ll get back to themselves tomorrow and we’ll be prepared for Saturday. We know it’s not going to be an easy game so the boys have to get their energy levels up again. It’s difficult when you have a small squad as you have to continually use the same players especially when you’re playing well and winning games.”

Sammy Clingan and Simon Kelly were not risked in either of the last two games and should be available for selection against Ballymena tomorrow. Mark Sykes should also be back after the was rested on Tuesday having played for the NI Under 21 side last week.

Ballymena had a great 6-3 win last Saturday against Ards and Gary knows that they will be a challenge tomorrow. “David (Jeffrey) has come in and done a great job as we saw last season they finished 4th in the league and qualified for Europe. We know that any game you play against a David Jeffrey side, it’s usually a difficult game and we know what they’re about. He wants energy, he wants work rate, he wants big, physical strong players that are prepared to battle and you have to be able to match that. If we can and play to our strengths and our energy levels then of course we stand a chance of winning the game but it’ll have to be back to where it was against Crusaders and the previous weeks.”

Form Guide (Last Five League Games)

Glenavon: W W W D W

Ballymena: L W L L W

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