Name – Tom Hughes
Nickname – Hughesy or Boy Blunder.
Ruts Appearances – 82
Ruts Goals – 17
Question 1 – When did you join the Old Ruts and why?
I was playing Cricket at the club from the age of 13 and a few of the lads played for the football section, so originally I tried signing up for football when I was 15, but I was too young to play at that stage, so I had to wait until I was 16.
Question 2 – What was your most memorable match and why?
That’s an easy choice for me -Winning the clubs first ever County Cup with the 3rd XI in 2005. The Game didn’t go totally to plan with Erol breaking his ankle, but we all stuck together on the pitch and ensured the only result would be an Old Ruts win. I will always remember that my grandfather came to watch the game, as he did a lot when I was growing up. Early on in the game I saw him sitting in the stands on his own watching , but by the end of the game he was right down at the front with all the football lad’s screaming and shouting – that’s what the Ruts has always been about for me, making people feel welcome no matter who they are… I do blame the lads for the heavy night of celebrations at Poplar Road afterwards and not leaving the Bar until the early hours of the morning. I had to get up only 6 hours later to sit a GCSE exam!
Question 3 – Who was the best Manager/Captain you played under?
That is a tough one!!! Manager I would have to say Graham Clayton who just pips Erol! Clayts always rated me and actually wanted me to play for the 2nds when I joined the club, but through availability him and Erol had a deal that I would play the first year in the 3rds but then I was to play higher after that! Clayts done a lot for me at the club picked me up for games and ensured I was looked after and always bought me a beer after the match. He always found a place for me in his team , no matter what – even playing me up top for half a season in the twos!
Captain must be Alan Whiter, when I was playing in the first XI with him. He was always committed and through his own ability made you feel comfortable when playing!
Question 4 – Your funniest Ruts Football Memory. Again, there were a few but I still have one that is unsolved to this day!!! I remember that someone used to take my boxers after every game for about 3 months, it got so bad that at one stage my mum told me I had to stop playing if this was to continue, as it was costing her money each month!! To this day I still do not know who did it!!
Question 5 – What is your least favourite Ruts Football Memory?
It has to be the Semi Final loss in 2007, when a certain two players had a disagreement on the pitch… We battered the oppo before that moment and we came close to winning with 9, then 8 men. Scott and Ryan were probably our better players throughout the competition, but I’m fairly sure we would have gone all the way that year…
Question 6 – Best Player you ever played with for the Ruts?
Again so many to choose from: Trig and Alan Morley where top quality up top. I also enjoyed playing with Funk at the back on occasions when we played together, but for me it has to be Nick Raggett, he was just a proper old school centre mid fielder who had loads of time on the ball, played easy passes and wouldn’t lose too many balls in the air.
Question 7 – Favourite Goal you scored or were part of in the build up?
To be honest I didn’t score many Worldies but I always remember playing up front for the twos one game and being marked by a brute of a guy who smashed me in the first two minutes and gave me a lot grief about being a youngster and I wasn’t very good etc… I remember hitting a volley in from a corner ( never did I hit the ball so sweet – actually I normally try and header the ball no matter what height it was!!!) went up to this big fella and gave him a few words! We played them off the park for the rest of the match winning by at least 6!
Question 8 – Most embarrassing moment in a Ruts Shirt? (Playing or Socially)
There been a few but probably some of the school error/own goals I given away in my time! I did not get the nickname Boy Blunder for nothing.