Cheltenham Town buoyed by play-off experience - Mark Yates

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Players are positive, says Yates

Mark Yates says Cheltenham Town's previous ventures in the League Two play-offs will give them valuable experience this season.

The Robins, who finished fifth in the table, start their fourth play-off campaign in 10 seasons on Thursday in the first leg against Northampton.

They reached the final at Wembley last year but lost 2-0 to Crewe.

"That experience would hopefully have done us some good," manager Yates told BBC Gloucestershire.

"We can prepare and draw our experiences from that.

"But essentially it's a different group, a different team, against different opposition. It's just about how you handle it.

"People say it's a lottery and we're in there with a chance, but we're not looking beyond Thursday at the moment."

Cheltenham did the double over the Cobblers this season and have won their last six meetings with Aidy Boothroyd's side.

But Yates is aware of the threat they pose.

"We are going to have a physical battle, a bombardment from their set-pieces which are a fantastic weapon for them," he added.

"We've got to deal with them and play our way. We've also got to deal with a big crowd.

"Their supporters really get behind their team so we need our players to embrace the situation and the challenge and really have a go at it."

The Robins travel to Sixfields on Thursday and welcome Northampton to Whaddon Road in the return leg on Sunday.