Gillespie boost for Aidy

STEVEN Gillespie continued his comeback from a hamstring injury by playing for 70 minutes in Colchester United Reserves' commanding 4-0 victory over Luton's second string yesterday afternoon.

Carl Marston

STEVEN Gillespie continued his comeback from a hamstring injury by playing for 70 minutes in Colchester United Reserves' commanding 4-0 victory over Luton's second string yesterday afternoon.

Club record signing Gillespie is yet to make an appearance for the U's first team this campaign, following injury in pre-season, but he was an unused substitute at Swindon on Saturday and so must surely be on the verge of a return to senior action.

It has been a frustrating last 14 months for Gillespie, since his �400,000 move from Cheltenham. He scored a brace in the U's 4-2 defeat at Hartlepool on the opening day of last season, but ironically that has been his only full 90 minutes of action.

The U's entertain Hartlepool this weekend, so Gillespie will again be hoping to get the nod against the north-east visitors, perhaps as a substitute.

Gillespie netted the second against Luton Reserves yesterday, smartly heading home David Fox's cross in the 35th minute. Midfielder Fox also set up the U's first goal, delivering the corner for Matt Lockwood to head home.

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It was a very strong U's Reserves team in action, reflecting the strength of the squad that manager Aidy Boothroyd has at his disposal.

The likes of Scott Vernon, Jamie Guy and Alan Maybury all enjoyed 90 minutes, while Medy Elito and Phil Ifil were also involved.

Frenchman Joel Thomas bagged a simple third goal late in the second half, with Vernon completing the scoring near the end.

Meanwhile, there was good news for the U's young full-back, Tom Bender, who was yesterday named in the Welsh squad for the UEFA

Under-17 Championships, which will be taking place in Wales later this month.

Bender played for the U's Reseves yesterday, and impressed throughout pre-season. Wales will play Russia, Bosnia and Iceland in the tournament.

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