Hawks to stage open trial

The Hawks have thrown open their doors in a bid to attract the area's brightest young talent.

Former Hawks centre-back Sam Pearce. Picture: Dave Haines
Former Hawks centre-back Sam Pearce. Picture: Dave Haines

And the Ryman League premier division club are urging aspiring footballers to step forward and attend a forthcoming trial.

The Hawks have traditionally relied on a link-up with South Downs College to supply promising players to their productive youth system.

However, the club have decided to move their academy in a different direction and on Monday, June 27, will stage open trials for youngsters aged 16 to 18.

All comers are welcome for the event, which will take place from 2pm to 4pm at South Downs College in Waterlooville.

The Hawks’ under-19s have won the South Central Division for the past three seasons but will now be moving into tougher league competition.

And they are hoping to identify more talented players to help them in their quest for added success at youth level.

Hawks director Trevor Brock said: ‘We have decided to make our academy available to a wider audience so the trial will be open to anyone.

‘We believe we may have missed out on a number of talented players over the years so this is their chance to get involved.

‘In the past, people generally have had to attend South Downs College to get into the youth system but on Monday anybody can come along to demonstrate their ability.

‘We put a lot of time and resources into bringing players through the ranks at Westleigh Park and our first-team manager, Lee Bradbury, takes plenty of interest in the set-up.

‘A number of players have risen through the system to appear for the first team in recent times, the likes of Nathan Ashmore, Sam Pearce and Harvey Whyte.

‘It is quite normal to throw the youngsters into the Hampshire Senior Cup and Portsmouth Senior Cup competitions during a season, so there are opportunities.

‘As a club it is something we are really committed to, the pathway is there if you are a young, talented footballer eager to progress your career with a local club.

‘We urge anyone interested to come down for next week’s trial to show what they have got.

‘Our under-19s will be going into a division next season which will probably be stronger and it would be great to pick up some more players to be part of that.

‘It is being headed by Sam Game, who has been in the role for a year and is continuing to move our youth system along very well.’

The trial is for those aged 16 to 18 and is scheduled to take place at South Downs College, College Road, Waterlooville, on Monday, June 27 from 2pm to 4pm.

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