SIMON AINGE is hoping to be fit to play against Darlington on Saturday for Boston United at Blackwell Meadows.

The 31-year-old is on loan from Darlington for the entire season, but there is no clause in the arrangement to prevent him playing against his parent club in the league.

Quakers manager Alun Armstrong was keen for Ainge to leave the club in the summer due to financial reasons, as he believed there was greater value to be found elsewhere.

Armstrong explained: “He’s a Boston player. Yes, we contribute a bit to his salary but it was the only way I could move him on and I had to agree to their terms. I needed him out for financial reasons.”

As Ainge’s Quakers contract expires in the summer of 2020, he is effectively no longer a Darlington player, though they continue to make a contribution towards his wages with Boston footing most of the bill.

Ainge has been an ever-present for Boston, not missing a minute of the action until last Saturday when he had to be substituted in an FA Cup tie against Sutton Coldfield Town.

“He got a kick on his calf, which tightened up. We wanted to see how it was going into the second half,” Boston boss Craig Elliott told the Boston Standard.

“He was struggling with it, but we’ve got a good replacement with Lewis Gibbens.

“It’s only in the FA Cup he (Ainge) can’t play (against Darlington). He can play in the league fixtures. The chances of drawing Darlington are slim so I agreed to that.”

Ainge has been playing as a defender for Boston, which is how he finished his year with Quakers having initially been signed in the summer of 2018 by Tommy Wright to play as a striker following a fruitful spell up front for Harrogate Town.

Wright, meanwhile, has lost his job at Stratford Town.

The club reached the play-offs last season, but are currently 11th in the Southern League Central Division and announced their decision this morning.

A statement read: “Following a series of disappointing performances and two cup defeats the club have decided to part company with manager Tommy Wright.

“The board would like to thank Tommy for all of his hard work during his time at the club and wish him all the best in the future however we believe we need to make a change now and go in a different direction.”

*Darlington's home game with Kidderminster Harriers will now be played on Wednesday, October 30 (7:45pm). The change means Quakers will play twice at home inside four days as they play Hereford at Blackwell on Saturday, November 2.

The Kidderminster match has been moved from Saturday, October 19 as Quakers are at Tamworth that day in the FA Cup.