Aaron O’Connor believes a “bit of knowhow” has played a key role in Kettering Town’s impressive start to the new season.
The Poppies booked themselves an Emirates FA Cup third qualifying round clash at Basford United with a 2-0 success over Kidsgrove Athletic at Latimer Park last weekend before a much-changed team beat Desborough Town 2-1 in the first round of the NFA Hillier Senior Cup on Tuesday night.
The focus, however, is now back on the Evo-Stik South League Premier with back-to-back home games against Chesham United on Saturday and Banbury United next Tuesday.
Kettering sit in third place with six wins from their seven matches so far.
Experienced frontman O’Connor, who grabbed the second goal against Kidsgrove, is hoping there will be plenty more to come.
And he firmly believes the patience the Poppies showed before hitting Kidsgrove with two late goals last weekend is a perfect example of why the beginning of this campaign has been so different to the stuttering start of the last one.
“We always had the quality last season but this time I think we have just got a bit more knowhow about us,” O’Connor said.
“We are seeing games through. There have been three or four games already this season that we wouldn’t have got a point from last year and we have won them.
“Saturday was a prime example. This time last year we might not have been so patient and got hit on the break and maybe lost 1-0.
“There is a bit of knowhow that has been installed into the team and there is a good work ethic.
“There haven’t been a huge number of changes but there’s a bit more experience in there and it’s resulted in our decision-making being a lot better. It was poor last season and the manager and the staff don’t give us a minute’s peace. That’s how it needs to be if you are going to be successful.
“We lost at Weymouth but hit back with two wins and hopefully we can go on another five or six-game run now.
“We want to take each game as it comes, try to keep winning and see where we end up.”
O’Connor also believes the rigorous pre-season he and his team-mates were put through has played a part in the encouraging start.
The striker, who now has four goals to his name so far this season, added: “We had a tough pre-season.
“To be fair to John (Ramshaw) and the staff, they got us working hard.
“I think that’s half the job. If you can get around the pitch and you are fitter and stronger than other teams then you are going out there with an advantage straight away.
“It’s given us a good platform to build on and our quality has shone through.”