Thursday 12th August 2004

Sevenoaks aiming for improvement

GRAHAM LOGSDON, general manager of Go Travel Kent League side Sevenoaks Town, has admitted the capture of former Bromley striker Andy Constable from league rivals Whitstable Town is a coup, writes Stephen McCartney.

Speaking ahead of Saturday's league opener at Hythe Town, he said: "He is a lad I've been after for two seasons and I see him as a coup.

"Potentially we are looking for him to score a lot of goals along with Richard Brice."

Brice is back in Sevenoaks' colours after playing for Dartford in pre-season, but he first came to the Greatness Park outfit at the end of last season after being snapped up from Tonbridge Angels. 

Logsdon revealed striker Ian Balmer is "back on board" following a long injury, and could face his former side Tunbridge Wells, in the derby game at Greatness Park next Tuesday.

More new players have put pen to paper and signed for the club, looking for a season of improvement, in only their second campaign in the Go Travel Kent League. 

Scott Barnes, who played for Liverpool University, is a utility player or midfielder.

Speaking of seventeen-year-old Andy Hart, Logsdon revealed: "He played for Maidstone United's reserve side last year and is also a county player.  He plays central defence, wingback or in the middle of the park and he is a very good prospect."

Central midfielder Danny Lee, formerly with Chatham Town and Gillingham youth, and Stuart Pyne have also been captured.

Midfielder Darren Sykes played for Greenwich Borough two years ago before coming to Sevenoaks for the first time and turned out for local British Energy Kent County League Premier Division side Crockenhill last season. 

However, the capture of Danny Wackett hangs in the balance.

Logsdon added: "He has a connection with Crawley Town's first team. 

"Although he is not under contract he wants to play in a midweek league there so he has to go where Crawley tells him.

"He played for Hertford Town in his last two outings - so I fear he is under the cosh from Crawley.

"I understand he wants to play at the highest level he can.

"He is a nice lad, and he has been very upfront with us and manager John James is very disappointed not to have secured him."

After nine years service at the club, Dave Norburn has sadly been forced to retire due to a reoccurring knee injury.

James Townsend, however, will be another big loss to the Oaks, and has signed for Kent County League side Old Roan, as his work commitments have taken him to London.

Leaving the club are former Tunbridge Wells manager Steve Clark, Richard Kennedy (work commitments)  and Andy Mills, who has worked so hard on his fitness, after being plagued by injury.

However, Logsdon is hopeful a number of good quality youngsters, who are currently progressing through the club, will stand in good stead during the course of the season.

Sevenoaks start the season with a trip to Hythe Town - a club looking to improve on last season's impressive sixth place.

Both sides won their corresponding home fixtures last season, but Logsdon is pinning his hopes on the club's new management team, after stepping down as manager in the close season.

Looking ahead, Logsdon said: "We have to be optimistic.  It's another start for us at the club with a new manager - John James - and a new number two - Julian Leigh."

Adding: "They worked together last year with the reserve team and they did very well. 

"I appointed John as reserve team manager three years ago and he has got a good track record having won league championships and cups.

"It's just a question of seeing how we get on in the early games."

With many clubs developing home grown talent, instead of paying big money for more seasoned players, Sevenoaks Town are no exception.

Logsdon said; "The promising aspect from my point of view is we have a good bunch of young talent at the club.

"With the introduction of Andy Hart in the first team squad, and we also have Phil Cramp.

"In the reserves we also have a number of young faces - I am a great believer that's the future of the club." 

He also admitted he has high hopes for seventeen-year-old goalkeeper Ben Fitzer.

"If he stays injury free and work on his game - he kicks with both feet and can throw the ball the length of the pitch - he is a very good prospect." said Logsdon.

And when asked how his club will fare this season, the general manager added: "Following the consolidation last year, it would be remiss of me not to expect improvement - we want to improve every year!

"We are still very young - we don't have the finances available like certain other clubs so we have to work within our means, working to a budget and addressing it as the weeks go by."

He did, however, wish new manager John James all the best for the new season.

Adding: "On a personal note it was a difficult decision to make, but as club manager, I hope John has a successful season and I wish him all the best and the club will give him the full backing." 

To advertise here telephone Stephen McCartney on 07979 418 360