Poppies experience has been good for captain Hicks

Kettering Town captain Nathan Hicks
Kettering Town captain Nathan Hicks
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Nathan Hicks insists his Kettering Town experience has been a good one so far.

The midfielder, who is currently captaining the Poppies, was one of the players who joined when the club started playing again after a month without any on-field action following the severe financial problems that so nearly put them out of business.

Hicks, who had previously played at Daventry Town, had the honour of scoring the first goal of the new era when he struck in the 2-1 defeat to Leamington.

Since then, he has played in the vast majority of the matches under both Alan Doyle and now Thomas Baillie as the Poppies continue to battle away, despite it only being a matter of time before their relegation from the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division is confirmed.

He struck the equaliser in last weekend’s 1-1 draw with AFC Totton at Steel Park, which was followed by another point as Aman Verma’s goal earned a 1-1 draw at Cambridge City on Tuesday night.

And while many continue to point to the club’s struggles on and off the pitch, Hicks insists there is a good feeling within the Poppies squad.

And he hasn’t ruled out the possibility of staying on for next season, should the long-term future of the club be resolved.

“This has been a very good experience for me,” Hicks said.

“When we all came in it was basically a newly-formed team, none of us knew each other and we had to start playing straight away.

“But, as time has gone on, I think we have started to play with confidence. I have enjoyed it a lot.

“Yes, there have been times when our heads have dropped during matches and things don’t tend to go for you when you are at the bottom like we are.

“I haven’t really thought to far ahead when it comes to next season.

“We are just concentrating on each game and we are trying to ensure we pick up some wins before the summer.

“Everyone keeps reminding us of our position but we don’t look at the league, we are just concentrating on the games we have.

“The most important thing is to get through this season and then we can sit down and talk in the summer.”

The Poppies are back in action at Corby Town’s stadium on Sunday when they take on Bideford looking to build on the two encouraging results this week.

And Hicks felt Kettering were particularly unfortunate at Cambridge in midweek as they missed a series of chances before falling behind and then grabbing a draw thanks to debutant Verma’s header.

“It was a great performance from the lads,” he added.

“We are a young group and don’t really fear anyone and we could have been 3-0 up by half-time.

“We went 1-0 down late on but we showed character again like we did at the weekend to fight back for a draw.

“It was the least we deserved for the performance we put in.”