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Ghosts in fine spirits

PUBLISHED: 11:33 15 May 2008 | UPDATED: 10:20 07 July 2010

Fakenham Town Football Club looked back on what vice-chairman Paul Wright described as "a most extraordinary, difficult and odd season" when they staged their annual presentation night at Clipbush Park on Saturday.

Fakenham Town Football Club looked back on what vice-chairman Paul Wright described as “a most extraordinary, difficult and odd season” when they staged their annual presentation night at Clipbush Park on Saturday.

But looking forward, he said: “We have so much confidence about next season. The spirit we now have in the club we have not seen for a long, long time.” He was backed by joint first team manager Stuart Woodhouse who said: “We want to make the town proud of the team that plays here.”

Wright referred to the nightmare start of the season when the Ghosts had about five players signed on for the Ridgeons League and Anglian Combination sides. He praised Chris Evans and Terry Hill, Evans for initially taking charge of the first team and Hill for running the reserve team. He thanked Neil Jarvis for his valuable advice.

Initially the sides got hammered, and the first team even made Radio Five Live after a 12-0 defeat, Wright recalled. “We had to go back to local players, and it has paid off. And it was the way we always wanted to go.” Clubmen Mark King and Stuart Woodhouse came on board as managers and things really took off, said Wright, adding: “But for Chris Evans we would not be here today. He took up the baton early on. His enthusiasm and commitment was top notch.”

He thanked the A team for playing the reserve side's first four games of the season while they got a squad together.

“Anyone who plays here recognised we have some of the best facilities in the league,” said Wright, acknowledging the work of the ground crew and the many people who helped the club behind the scenes.

Joint manager King emphasised the importance of getting the correct club structure, starting with the junior section. “While we want to have a first team based around Fakenham, if you want to play at Ridgeons level you cannot do it entirely that way. You have to bring in players who travel from further away, but who commit to the club. We have that right balance.”

Martin Fenwick was voted first team players' player and the managers' player of the season.

Other awards: Reserves players' player, Byron Huggins; manager's player, Daniel Rose. A team manager's and players' player, Matthew Gray. Fakenham Ladies players' and manager's player, Amy Boycott; most improved, Charlene Kenny. U18 players' player, Jamie Batchelor; manager's player, Christian Nelson; most improved, Nathan Stockdale. Clubman of the year: Andrew Cornwall.

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