A BIZARRE rule is threatening to kill Evesham United’s promotion dream but boss Paul Collicutt insists his sole focus is securing a play-off berth.

The Robins slipped out of the Southern League Division One South top five following Saturday’s 2-2 draw at home to Bristol Manor Farm and hope to reignite their bid with a win at fellow contenders Cirencester Town on Saturday (3pm).

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But if they do make the cut there seems set to be a fly in the ointment thanks to a curved ball thrown in by the FA this season.

With seven divisions at Evesham’s level and only 12 promotion places, all of the league champions go up but two out of seven play-off winners with the worst points-per-game records in the league will be denied promotion.

It means at least two clubs nationally will enter each stage of the play-offs knowing they cannot go up and current statistics would see Evesham fall into the category before playing in any semi-final.

“I haven’t spoken about it. The big thing for me is to focus on getting into the top five and no one has an easy run in, far from it,” said Collicutt.

“Teams under us have games in hand and have a chance but there will be funny results between now and the end.

“All you can do is get on with it. We would worry about that if and when it happened, we are still in with a shout and have a five-match unbeaten record.”

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Will Tunnicliff and Linden Dovey are doubts for the trip to Cirencester after suffering injuries on Saturday.

“We know we have to go to Cirencester and be very positive, hopefully we can give them a run for their money,” added Collicutt.

“I feel we play better when against the better teams. Hopefully their record will put something in my lads where they go all out for the result.

“The pitch there is very fast and everyone tells you being at home is a real advantage for them. Still, it is a game I am really looking forward to, we have nothing to fear.”