It’s been the first professional season of his career but it couldn’t really have been a better start for the Iron’s Terry Hawkridge.The winger has made over 40 appearances this term in all competitions since his move from Gainsborough Trinity in the summer and winning promotion has just been the icing on the cake for a player that has made a meteoric rise through the divisions over the last few years, playing in the eighth tier of English football for Carlton Town as little as two years ago.
He was rewarded for his performances in pre-season with a place in the starting line-up to make his first appearance of the season in the opening day victory over Mansfield Town and has gone from strength to strength as the season has gone on.
He answered questions about the season as a whole and how his first season as a professional has gone for him from a personal standpoint.
So, with promotion now having been sealed, how does it feel to know you’re going to be playing in League One next year?
TH: Yeah, it feels great. Obviously it’s been my first season as a professional and it’s great to have been able to mark that with promotion.
It must be even more special for you considering your non-league background and the fact you’ve risen up through the leagues over the last few years as well?
TH: Yeah, getting the chance to play with the players that I’ve played with this year has been amazing. People dream of promotion and some players have careers that last twenty years without getting the chance so it’s been great.
Would you say that you consider this the highlight of your career so far?
TH: Yeah, definitely and I’m sure it will stay up there throughout my career because obviously your first promotion is always going to be a highlight.
What do you think the main qualities the team have had this season are?
TH: We’ve not really conceded many and I think we’ve always been the first team to score and have held on. The team spirit has always been there as well and it’s been great to be a part of that.
Do you think the amount of experience in the squad has helped?
TH: Definitely, there’s a lot of experienced players that I’ve played with this year and I’ve learned a lot from them so I’d say it’s been a big help this season.
The unbeaten run under the new manager obviously played a huge part in the season, how did it feel to be a part of that?
TH: Yeah, it was great to be a part of a run that lasted 28 games, I think it was. That’s over half of a season and a lot has been made about the fact that it’s gone down as a record so that means that it’s always going to be one to remember.
What’s your personal highlight of the season?
TH: I think my first game of the season against Mansfield really, just because it was great to come from non-league and to be picked in the starting eleven for the first professional game of your career.
What would you say the best game you’ve played this season is?
TH: I think Bury at home was a good game for me and the first game against Mansfield again but I don’t know really, I’ve enjoyed every game that I’ve played in but they are the ones that stand out for me.
Have you been happy with your performance levels this season?
TH: Yeah, I’m happy with how I’ve played this year. There are some games where I could’ve performed better but overall, I’m happy with how my first season has gone. Obviously we’ve been promoted so I couldn’t have asked for any more.