OLLIE PALMER praised Ben Tozer for the way he has conducted himself on and off the pitch during a difficult time for Wrexham's club captain.

Tozer had started every league game since arriving at The Racecourse from Cheltenham Town in August 2021 but was given a well-deserved breather for the 1-0 win at Crawley on October 7.

Reds' boss Phil Parkinson said it was the right time to give Tozer, who recently opened up on the heart-breaking loss of his father Keith during the summer following a battle with leukemia, a rest and the 33-year-old missed four games before appearing as a substitute in the 2-1 win over Sutton on October 24.

Although he was left out of the squad for the next game at Notts County, Tozer came into the starting XI after Jordan Tunnicliffe suffered an injury in the warm-up and he starred in the 2-0 win.

Two more starts followed in the FA Cup first round 2-1 win over Mansfield and Saturday's 2-0 victory at home to Gillingham, and Tozer's performance did not go unrecognised as he was named in the League Two team of the week.

But Palmer says the centre-back has been just as important to Wrexham away from the action in the dressing room.

"Ben's an unbelievable professional and he sets really high standards of himself and everyone in the changing room," said Palmer.

"It's no surprise to see Ben playing the way he is, even after everything he has been through.

"He is a fantastic lad and it just shows the kind of man he is off the pitch more than on the pitch."

Palmer opened the scoring after just 57 seconds against Gillingham, netting his fifth goal of the season, and Tozer made the game safe in the second half.

It was a comfortable win which extended the unbeaten run to 11 matches in all competitions and leaves Wrexham second in the table, five points behind leaders Stockport County.

Palmer is pleased with how things are going but he refuses to get carried away.

"It was a solid performance," said Palmer. "We did everything that we needed to do.

"It is always tough when you come up against a team with a new manager, you normally get a bit of a reaction, so we dealt with that well and it was comfortable."

Palmer gave Wrexham the perfect start but victory was more important than his goal to the striker.

"You have just got to take the opportunities as they come," he added.

"It was pleasing to get a goal but more importantly, a clean sheet and another three points.

"I feel like the team is growing each week and that is pleasing.

"It is similar to last season where we have got a group of honest lads in there and we give it our all.

"We are on a great run and that is another game ticked off."