Pedlars boss Hunt says Swaffham Town deserve promotion spot

FA Cup Action Swaffham Town FC v Huntington ENGANL00220130209094211
FA Cup Action Swaffham Town FC v Huntington ENGANL00220130209094211
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Swaffham Town manager Paul Hunt believes his present squad deserve the chance of performing in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division after clinching promotion.

The second-spot Pedlars’ 3-2 victory over Braintree Town Reserves last weekend confirmed their place in the top flight for next season.

Despite their success, Hunt, whose side host Woodbridge in their final fixture of the campaign tomorrow, doesn’t foresee many new faces arriving at Shoemakers Lane during the summer.

Hunt said: “We won’t be looking to make massive changes at all for next season.

“Our squad is getting better all of the time.

“We’ve also got a really good crop of young players coming through and they will be even stronger in another three or four months time.

“We’ve got such an honest bunch of lads here and they have gelled better than you could ever have imagined.

“We are always looking to improve both collectively and individually, but the structure and quality of our game has come on because of the reliability of our players.”

Hunt admitted that it has taken five years of hard work to get the club to where it is today.

“It has taken real graft right from the start and has been about finding the right players and people for the club,” said Hunt.

“It was never going to be a quick-fix. It was about laying down the foundations from the start.

“Some of the players who joined the squad in the first couple of seasons are still here.

“Even when results weren’t going our way they have stuck with it and worked hard together to be a part of the success. That has made our promotion even more sweeter.”

Although Alex Vincent and Joe Jackson have almost notched 50 goals between them, Hunt hailed the whole Swaffham squad for the part they have played in helping the club make the step up.

“Both Vinnie and Joe have had great seasons and to score the amount of goals which they have has been a tremendous feat.

“But it just isn’t about them. The midfield have had to work hard to create the chances, while our back four and goalkeeper have been resolute and magnificent to stop other teams from scoring.”

Reflecting on his early days in the Pedlars hotseat, Hunt said: “When I first arrived Matty Parkinson, Lewy Hemeter (now assistant boss) Richard Cornwall and David Spalding was all what was left of the first team squad.

“I had to bring Scott Voutt out of retirement and that was a massive bonus. He helped drag us through the dark days and had a massive impact on what we have achieved now.

“When I look back, there isn’t one player at Swaffham who we have brought in from another senior club.

“The players we have were either coming back from injury, coming back to play at the same level or have been some of the up-and-coming youngsters who we have brought through.

“I look around the squad now and with every player there is a story to tell.

“The likes of Dean Miller, Jack Redhead and Matty Castellan were all players we signed, but they couldn’t play because of serious injuries.

“They’ve all had to go through long periods of rehabilitation to get where they are today.”

Hunt would love his side to end the season on a high in front of their own fans tomorrow.

“Promotion for the club is fantastic and that’s what you are always aiming for at the start of every season,” said Hunt.

“We really wanted to get to the next level and it feels like a real sense of achievement now we’ve managed it.

“It would be great to end the season with another win against a good Woodbridge team, who I felt were one of the best sides we’ve played when we played them away.

“This promotion isn’t about individuals, it’s a collective achievement for everyone who has worked so hard for the club.”