Everybody deserves credit, says Poppies skipper Steve

Poppies captain Steve Kinniburgh
Poppies captain Steve Kinniburgh

Steve Kinniburgh believes those behind the scenes at Kettering Town deserve as much credit as the players for the way the season has panned out.

The Poppies are preparing for their last game of the season as they take on Slough Town in the Calor League Division One play-off final at Latimer Park on Monday (3pm).

An 11th win in a row for Dean Thomas’ men will see them promoted to the Premier Division, 12 months after they were relegated following a campaign of financial turmoil.

Those problems still existed at the start of the current season until the club survived a winding up order in the High Court.

By then, the Poppies had suffered six defeats in their first 10 league matches, including a 5-1 home drubbing to Monday’s opponents. But their survival in the courts was followed by swift changes to the squad.

With a number of new additions, Kettering’s season was turned around in dramatic style as they battled their way up the table and suffered just two more defeats in the regular campaign to seal a third-place finish.

Captain Kinniburgh was one of those who survived the cull, having joined the Poppies last summer.

And he has piled the praise on chairman Ritchie Jeune and those behind the scenes for doing their bit in helping to change the club’s fortunes.

Kinniburgh said: “I have got to take my hat off to the coaching staff, the directors and the chairman because they didn’t know the league and we got to October, 10 games in, and they knew it wasn’t working and they changed it.

“They could have consolidated in this league and that would have been fine.

“But they got together and brought in players in October, November and December and we have only been beaten twice in the league since then.

“We have won 10 matches in a row at this point but everyone has to take credit for it not just the players.

“Everybody behind the scenes has wanted this all season and from October we kicked on. It has been brilliant to be part of.”