have been catching up with goalkeeper Jack Martin as the youngster prepares for national team duty with England Schools Under 18’s. Firstly, congratulations on your call up to the England Schools Under 18’s squad. Does this rank as your best achievement so far as a young keeper?
Jack Martin: Yes, by far. To represent my country has been one of my main goals as a goalkeeper. It makes it so much more meaningful when you know you’ve put in so much hard work to get this opportunity. Fantastic! For those reading this that don’t know you, can you just give us a background of your football journey so far?
JM: I’ve been playing in goal around 5 years now. I started playing Sunday league for various different teams, while I was doing this I started going to Between the Sticks in Canford around 2 and a half years ago. This was where I started to progress most. At the start of last season I signed for Basingstoke Town u16’s and u18’s. I was playing very well so I was able to start playing for the reserves as well. The club then started to integrate me with the first team and I was part of the squad on many different occasions at home and traveling away. I made my first team debut for them against St. Ives which ended in a 2-2 draw but was a great experience for me and my progression as a player. At the end of the season I went to a Weymouth FC pre-season training and the manager Mark Molesley seemed interested in me and wanted me on board. So I signed for Weymouth. I also attend Sparsholt College where I do their Football Programme which has improved me as a player and has me studying sports science. It has opened multiple doors for me in football. How important has Weymouth goalkeeping coach Robbie Yates been for you? Also, are there any other influential people that have helped you?
JM: Robbie Yates has been so helpful for me ever since I met him at Between the Sticks when I started going. He was always willing to help me improve in any ways I could. As well as all of the other coaches at Between the Sticks who ALL played a vital roles in giving me confidence and providing me with information and techniques to improve myself. I also have to thank my Dad and my brother because they are always taking me to sessions at Weymouth and taking me anywhere I need to go for football. Without these two I wouldn’t have been able to make it as far as I have. There has also been the coaches at Sparsholt College who have all helped me Lewis Benson and Neil Benson has given me the opportunity to put me forward for all of the England Schools trials which I am massively grateful for because without those opportunities I wouldn’t be in the position I am now. I’m no where near the best and I always want to improve. Do you have any personal objectives in the near future?
JM: I just want to keep progressing and to keep working hard and see where my hard work and determination can get me in football. But a dream of mine would be being able to get a pro contract at a pro club. Finally, your news got a lot of positive reaction on our social media pages, that must make you pleased?
JM: Yes, it was good to see that it got a lot of attention and it will be good for everyone to know a little bit more about me as a player.

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