Craig Elliott has praised the battling qualities of Jake Wright after the striker helped Boston United book their place in the National League North play-off final.
Wright scored twice and won two penalties as the Pilgrims beat Gateshead 5-3 at York Street at the weekend, a constant thorn in the side of Heed player-manager Mike Williamson, who conceded both spot kicks.
The forward's selection was at the expense of 13-goal attacker Dominic Knowles, Frank Mulhern and Jordan Nicholson, who made his debut off the bench.
"I had to play him, he's been the best trainer by a mile," Elliott said of the energetic forward, who has missed large chunks of the campaign due to injury.
"He knows he's had a disappointing season but I've never lost faith in him.
"I know what he can do. I talked to him about unsettling Williamson as much as he could do, and I thought he did that.
"He (Williamson) an ex-Premier league player who's been doing very well, and he didn't want to mark Jake because Jake is just a handful."
Elliott may have given Wright the thumbs up for his headline-stealing performance, but the whole team were given credit for the way they approached the return to action.
Elliott added: "Gateshead are a good team, a full-time team, and they pass the ball really well.
"Our lads are training, going to work full time. I've absolutely hammered them at training this month, like a full time outfit.
"It's been difficult and not once did they moan. At the end you couldn't tell who the full-time team was."
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