Otters' new boss Watkins

Mark Watkins will be the new manager for Ottery St Mary first team.

Mark Watkins will be the new manager for Ottery St Mary first team. Mark has had quite a history in football, playing for local sides in the Devon & Exeter Premier in his younger years. Then he joined the Royal Navy and represented the Navy in games all over the world.When in port he played for Saltash in the Cornish league. Later he played again for Axminster where he broke his leg ending his playing career. After this, and still with his enthusiasm for the game, he took on refereeing and got to Devon League standard.His next challenge was management, starting in Axminster at the lower level and moving up to be part of the team that got Axminster into the South West Peninsula league. Recently he has been manager at Seaton FC and now relishes the chance to take on the role of the Otter's first team manager. Chairman Greg Layzell said: "Mark has a lot of knowledge of players in Devon and I believe he will be able to bring in players to strengthen the young, improving side we have at the moment and start taking us forward."My grateful thanks also go out to Gary Watson and Dave Webber for seeing the club through the last couple of months. Our young lads have learnt a lot from them and their professionalism."Putting Mark in place now means he has the close season to try and regroup."Ottery St Mary have had a difficult season, having had a variety of caretaker managers seeing them through during the search for a new manager.They are currently at the foot of the Peninsula League Div 1 East table but escape relegation due to the fact that Buckfastleigh have withdrawn from the league. Layzell added: "The fact that there was no relegation meant that we haven't been desperately trying to bring in new players in this second half of the season." Ottery St Mary have two games left, Okehampton at home next Wednesday and Stoke Gabriel away the following Saturday. Mark Watkins is due to watch the Reserves play at Exmouth Town on Saturday, where he will meet up with Reserves managers Tim Mills and Mark Murrin.

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