‘Keeper and five ex-Yellows in team of year

James Lindley
James Lindley

HUCKNALL Town’s season has not been entirely potless. For James Lindley has been named the best goalkeeper in Division One South of the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League.

Remarkably, the division’s team of the year — voted by managers — also included FIVE former Town players.

Gary Ricketts (now with Ilkeston), Russell Cooke (Ilkeston), Terry Hawkridge (Carlton Town), Nathan Watson (Stamford) and Reuben Wiggins-Thomas (Carlton) were all named in the team.

Veteran striker Ricketts (37) even carried off the division’s player of the year accolade, while winger Hawkridge was pinpointed as the division’s young player of the year.

Lindley (31), who began his career at Notts County, is currently in his FOURTH spell at Watnall Road. He initially made 43 appearances during the club’s glory years between 2004 and 2006 and then starred in the Blue Square North relegation season of 2008/09.

He has been virtually an ever-present this term and won praise this week from manager Des Lyttle.

“James wasn’t a ‘keeper I knew much about when I first came to the club,” said Lyttle. “But he has been a rock for us. A really good, steady performer, who deserves this award.”

Ricketts is currently player/coach at Ilkeston, whom Hucknall play on Easter Monday. He scored almost 100 goals for The Yellows in spells at Watnall Road between 2001 and 2009

He was the club’s record signing when initally snapped up by John Ramshaw for £1,500 and went on to score 27 goals in the famous season of 2003/04 when Town won the Unibond League, Premier Division title under Steve Burr and would have gained promotion to the Conference if their ground had been up to scratch.

Ricketts was also an integral part of Dean Barrick’s Yellows side that reached the final of the FA Trophy at Villa Park in 2005.