Dave Challinor on Hartlepool United's points landmark and the automatic promotion battle

Hartlepool United passed the 60-point mark for the first time in a season since 2007 over the Easter weekend.

And Pools boss Dave Challinor – who hasn’t given up on the automatic promotion slot just yet – believes it will take another eight points to secure a play-off spot.

Promotion-chasing Pools are second in the National League ahead of Saturday’s huge clash with play-off rivals Notts County, who sit fifth, at Victoria Park in the early evening kick-off.

Challinor’s side head into the fixture on the back of the Good Friday win over Dagenham & Redbridge and the draw at Boreham Wood on Monday.

Pools boss Dave Challinor. Mark Fletcher | MI News & Sport Ltd

The Pools boss knows it is a tough ask for his team to win the league given Sutton United have three games in hand. Not impossible, however.

Reflecting on passing the 60-point mark, Challinor said: “I’d rather be at 70 points but it’s ticking another win off for us and getting us closer to where I think we need to be and it does it in a space of time where we’ve still got a number of games left to affect the table.

"I’ve said, 68, 69 points would be enough to make sure you’re in the play-offs this season.

"It’s probably going to need at least 75 to finish second or third and in terms of winning the league, it’s probably going to take 84 which would mean virtually winning every game for us.

"It’s still doable and that’s our aim but our short term aim is winning our next game and keeping the momentum building,” added the Pools chief.

On Monday, goals from Gavan Holohan and Richie Bennett saw Pools come from behind twice to secure a point at Meadow Park despite playing the majority of the game with forward Rhys Oates in goal.

Pools trailed 2-1 when Ben Killip was forced off due to an elbow injury as Oates donned the goalkeeper gloves.

Challinor is set to provide an injury update on Killip on Friday during his weekly press conference ahead of the game against Notts County on Saturday teatime, the Pools boss will certainly be hoping he will be able to call upon his No1 keeper for the run-in.

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