Otters look to the future

Ottery St Mary Football Club held their annual presentation evening in the club house at Washbrook Meadows.

Ottery St Mary Football Club held their annual presentation evening in the club house at Washbrook Meadows. There was plenty of lively discussion over the dinner about the season just gone, not the best of season's in Ottery's history but you would never have guessed with the atmosphere in the club. New manager Mark Watkins got straight into the team spirit of the occasion with his players and with the committee. Tim Mills, who has done an excellent job just keeping the team together in this difficult season, made a great speech to get things under way.Awards: Supporter's Player of the Year: Harry Mills; Players' Player: Dan Jewell; Manager's Player: Nick Searle.Mark Murrin, after another entertaining speech, announced the reserves team winners: Players' Player of the Year: Theo Van-Spyk; Manager's Player: Jack Collins.The Clubman of the Year was shared between Monty Perry and Paul Swingler, who both worked tirelessly for the club.The real winners this season where the chairman, committee members, players, staff, supporters and sponsors of the club who kept it going through a very difficult period.With the new first team manager being installed, and Tim and Mark running the reserve team, the club are looking forward to a better season next season and a brighter future.A special thanks must go to Ann-Marie Hathaway and her staff for the excellent food and service on the night and for the catering all season.New Ottery St Mary manager, Mark Watkins, has stressed the importance of a decent pre-season schedule. Players old and new will return to Washbrook Meadows for pre season training on Wednesday, July 1 at 6.30pm.He said: "I have already started talking to a number of clubs and taking the time to make sure our pre-season schedule is the best one possible. I cannot say too much at this stage, but I will let the supporters know all the details as soon as I have everything confirmed."Watkins also revealed he is close to finalising his backroom team, adding: "I am speaking to two people at the moment and, hopefully, we can sort something out in the next couple of weeks. "It is important that I have people that I can trust and I expect to be able to announce something soon"."Obviously we need to strengthen the squad and I will be speaking to several players over the coming weeks to convince them to move to Washbrook Meadows. I believe there are a lot of players playing at a lower level who are more than capable of stepping up to play at Peninsula League standard and I will be encouraging them to give it a go at Ottery."It's a new start here and I hope the supporters will back us. "In return, I know how I want the team to play and I want entertaining, attacking and, most importantly, winning football. Everyone can rest assured that I will be putting all my energies into getting the best possible squad together.

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