SHOLING could face a fight to keep hold of the young gun who is firing them up the Southern One South & West table.

Blue Square Bet South neighbours Eastleigh have lodged notice of approach for Lee Wort, scorer of nine goals in a blistering start to 2013.

Having netted twice against Winchester City on New Year’s Day, Wort has since added hat-tricks against Shortwood and Abingdon.

And on Saturday he grabbed the vital 36th-minute decider as the Boatmen halted Paulton Rovers’ six-match winning league streak 1-0 at the Silverlake Arena.

It was Sholing’s fifth straight league victory, lifting them to 15th, seven points clear of bottom spot. And should they win their many games in hand, they could yet be knocking on the door of the play-offs despite a slow start to the campaign.

Wort’s prolific goal supply will be key to that, however, and manager Dave Diaper is hoping the 21-year-old will choose to continue his football education with regular games for Sholing rather than possibly warming the bench at a higher level.

“Eastleigh asked me to waive the seven-day notice of approach, but I’m not going to give them the benefit of that and officially they can’t talk to Lee until Thursday,” said Diaper.

“I’m somewhat surprised they’ve come in for him because, at that level, they usually go for experience.

“Lee’s a good player, but he’s a raw talent and I don’t know if he’s ready for the Conference South yet. It’s not just about ability, it’s about the desire required at that level.