BASINGSTOKE Town have announced their first pre-season friendly – a home game against Championship outfit Crystal Palace.

The south London club will visit The Camrose on Friday, July 15, with the game due to kick-off at 7pm.

Basingstoke boss Frank Gray is looking forward to the match and is hoping to see a big crowd come out to see the game.

“It is a good, high profile game,” he said. “We are led to believe it will be Crystal Palace’s full first team squad because they are on a week-long camp, playing us on the way home.

“My son is good pals with Palace manager Dougie Freedman so when he got the job I gave him a ring and he was happy to help.

“It’s one to look forward to and hopefully there will be a big crowd. Palace will probably have some new faces so it will be a chance for their fans to have a look at them as well.

“The game will probably be our first in pre-season. We begin training again on July 7 and it will probably just be a few hard sessions before the Crystal Palace game.”

Gray also revealed that he is in talks with a number of other clubs regarding possible friendly fixtures.

“There are a few more clubs we are waiting to hear back from and hopefully a few more games will be sorted out soon,” the Town boss added. “We are just reliant on other clubs getting back to us now.”

One player Gray is hoping to have in his squad for pre-season is Delano Sam-Yorke. The striker, who scored 10 goals during a successful loan spell at The Camrose last season, has been released by AFC Wimbledon – and Gray is keen to bring him back.

“We have spoken to Delano so he knows our position,” Gray said. “He is still keen to stay full-time if possible so we will have to wait and see what happens.

“Our hands are a bit tied at the moment because he knows that we are interested and we just have to hope it turns out well for us in the end.”