DENIS Smith fears Wrexham's threadbare squad will be stretched to its limits by their hectic run-in, writes Paul Wheelock.
The Racecourse boss was left frustrated when the club had to postpone their Easter weekend matches with Brentford and Port Vale, after six Dragons were selected for international duty.
Yet rather than welcome the break, Smith feels the enforced lay-off may have a negative impact on his side's fight to remain in League One.
Wrexham, who are still sweating on the fitness of a number of key players, kick-start a run of 10 games in 35 days when they entertain Bournemouth tomorrow.
Smith said: 'We would have preferred to have been playing last weekend.
'The break means we're going to have to get stuck into a number of important games very quickly, without much break in-between - which is unfair and asking a lot of the players.'
Wrexham's inactivity was seized upon by their relegation rivals, as Oldham Athletic, Milton Keynes Dons and Torquay United all improved their standing.
Those results left Smith's side eight points away from the safety zone, albeit with two games in hand on the four sides above them.
The Wrexham manager says he cannot concern himself with the displays of his relegation rivals. 'Results of other teams don't bother me. It's something newspapers and fans do. You see one of the other sides getting a good result and you feel like putting your neck in a rope. And then one goes your way and you feel you like you've won the league,' he said.
'That's not the way I like to work. All that matters is where you finish at the end of the season.'
Tomorrow's opponents Bournemouth suffered a blow to their play-off ambitions on Monday, when they went down 1-0 to MK Dons - a victory inspired by former Dragon Matt Baker, who was given the man-of-the-match award for his dis-play in the Dons goal.
So chief Smith - whose side lost 4-2 in their last match at Swindon - will warn his players of a backlash.
He said: 'There was lot going on in that game that the result doesn't really show - like a missed penalty. They are a good side and when they're on their day, they can be a joy to watch.
'In that respect it should be a good game because we are playing well ourselves. When you see the goals that lost us the game at Swindon, they were down to the referee. Take that result away and our form is good.'
Ben Foster will continue in goal after he re-signed from Stoke City for a third month on loan.
Ryan Harrison also returns to the Racecourse from non-league Hastings United with veteran keeper Andy Dibble unlikely to play this season after tearing his thigh muscle again.
Brian Carey and Jim Whitley's campaigns are also over, but there was pleasing news for Smith when Dean Bennett, Alex Smith and Danny Williams came through Tuesday night's reserve-team match unscathed while Mark Jones is expected to be available for tomorrow's game.
Wrexham head to Barnsley on Tuesday.