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Whitley Warriors Paul Matthews Reflects on Title-Winning Season

Whitley Bay Warriors, Paul Matthews, has reflected his time, in his first season, managing the North Tyneside team towards the North 1 Moralee league title.

  • Despite the Warriors’ impressive league record, what was your most enjoyable game of the season?

“I have 2 games that come to mind both against Solihull [Barons].

“The first game was at home when we were 2-0 down, playing well but just couldn’t score. We ended up winning 4-2. The second game was our first away trip to Solihull, we were always chasing the game but ending up winning 7-4.

“Both games were pivotal in winning the league as Solihull were one of our main rivals along with Solway.”

  • Apart from watching the team hold the league trophy, what is your
    proudest moment of this year’s campaign?

“Lifting the league trophy cannot be beaten, to be fair, but winning the league in my first season as GM makes me very proud. David [Longstaff] and I have a great team around us so it was a collective effort from everyone.”

  • On the other hand, do you have a moment in the season you’d like to forget?

“The cup final games against Murrayfield [Racers] are games that really disappoint me.

“We lost Phil Edgar due to a ban, which was totally unjust in my opinion, and Ben Campbell played with a horrendous groin injury. I firmly believe if both players played both games and Ben was 100% fit, we would have won that cup final.”

  • All the players have worked hard across the season, to help the team secure the league title, but is there a player, in particular, that has really impressed you?

“I can’t single out any individual player. The whole team came on board and bought into what David and I wanted at the start of the season and we all got what we deserved: the league title.”

  • If a new fan was interested in watching the Warriors play next
    season, what game would you recommend them to watch on the Whitley Warriors TV YouTube channel over the break?

“Any games against Billingham [Stars] always create a great atmosphere, especially with the fans, so those games are always games that fans would enjoy.”

Kamron Kent