Interview with Calvin Brooks

It’s the new year. What are three resolutions that Calvin Brooks has?

I’ll be honest, I’m not really into New Year’s resolutions. I’m not a huge fan of the whole “new year, new me” thing. So, I don’t really have resolutions; instead I’d rather just stick to what I’m already doing. The main thing is looking after my body in terms of diet and going to the gym.

What has been your favourite New Year game?

This might be cheating as it’s a Boxing Day game, but it’s in the same time period so surely it counts!

It was in 2014, when we beat Dorchester 3-0. I played with some real Weymouth legends in that game: Adam Kelly, George Rigg, Tim Sills. Top players. I’ll never forget Sills’ diving header at the back post. To win a game of that magnitude in front of so many people was special. Especially in those conditions; the pitch was a mud-bath!

After speaking to a lot of the other lads, is it fair to say that the vibe around the club is very positive?

It’s been really positive all season. I feel like we’re in a fairly good place at the moment in terms of not losing many games. Yes, we are drawing a lot and need to turn those draws into wins, but we’re leaving games with something. That gives you something to hold onto and build from.

We’re starting to build relationships all over the pitch too, which you can probably see with our performances. That’s only going to benefit us as the season goes on.

With that in mind, who’s the most fun in the dressing room?

I’d have to go with Gerard Benfield. He’s always at 100 miles an hour!

In the changing room he’s always throwing something at you, like physically throwing something at you. Last game he was throwing a foam roller at me. We were launching it at each-other as hard as we could. Sometimes he’ll also launch golf and cricket balls at you, so watch out or something hard will come your way!

Who do you trust the most with the pre-match music?

Teddy Howe is our DJ and he does a decent job. Whether it’s House, or this or that, he manages to keep the lads happy as we’re all getting ready. He’s the man that steps up so I’m happy to give that to him.

Who do you least trust with the pre-match music?

I would probably say Brandon Goodship. If he was the DJ before the game I would fall asleep. I travel up with him a lot and he never plays anything from this century. He was buzzing about Rick Astley doing the New Year’s Eve countdown!

But, if it’s not 80s it’s country. He loves that, and so does Tom Bearwish to be fair.

I’ve heard you’re the biggest prankster. Are you able to confirm whether this is true!?

I like to keep things interesting! I suppose I’m a bit older, so I’m more relaxed than the other players. It’s just about keeping things light hearted and helping people stay calm before a game.

You get to choose two players for a night out – no curfew. Who do you choose and why?

I’d say Brandon and Tom. I’ve had a few nights out with Brandon and he’s always on the dance floor, especially when the older tunes come on!

Tom’s outfits are just outrageous. For a lad from Portland, he does surprise you. Instead of being steady and safe, whatever he sees on Tik Tok he’ll click the link and buy it. Chunky leather boots and silk shirts, you name it. Fair play to him.

I want to ask you about yourself in more depth, how did you get into football?

I’ve been playing football for as long as I can remember. Like most other people, you start out running rings around your mates and people think you’re going to end up playing for England, before you level out as you get older. You take it a bit more seriously then.

I was 17 when I was asked to go on trial at Dorchester by Andy Harris, an ex-Weymouth legend. The mentality there was that Weymouth was the dark side!

I then spent a year at Yeovil, before I was told by their assistant manager that a few clubs were interested in me. I didn’t even think about the other clubs; as soon as I saw Weymouth, I wanted to go there straight away. It was the one club I was warned about, and I chose to go there!

I knew I would enjoy playing football at Weymouth because of the size of the club. It just appealed to me. I was offered another six months at Yeovil not long after joining, but I knew I couldn’t do it. That was nearly 10 years ago, and I’ve not looked back.

You’ve played for Weymouth for most of your career, how does it feel to be a Terra?

It feels amazing. It’s a proper family club. You see how diverse our support is. Because I’ve been here for so long, I have loads of fans talk to me on a match day, where they ask how I’m doing. That’s a really nice feeling.

I grew up only half-an-hour from the ground, in Bovington, so it’s special to play for a club that’s so close to me.

What has been the biggest change at the club since you first started out?

Absolutely everything. The club has evolved so much in all aspects, both on and off the pitch. The facilities, the organisation, how things are done on a daily basis, everything has stepped forward. On my first session, Stewart Yetton didn’t have his kit so he had to train in lost property!

That doesn’t mean things weren’t good back then, they were, but everything has moved upwards so much since then. We’ve come a long way from my first session!

What about Bobby stands out from the other managers you’ve played under?

His intensity. All he cares about is winning, and he’ll do anything to achieve that. When I first spoke to him, I realised just how much he was willing to give to win. That’s what sets him apart, I think.

Who’s the best player you’ve ever played against?

It has to be Thiago Silva. When we played Chelsea in a pre-season friendly in 2021, we faced them at their training ground. He played in the middle of a back three, like he does now, and he was just incredible. Five steps ahead of everyone else. We had Bradley Ash up front, who loves to play off the shoulder, but everytime the ball went forward Silva would have already dropped back and given himself space.

Finally, how are the lads feeling going into Saturday’s game?

We’re feeling really positive. We’re picking up points; the aim now is to just turn them into wins. We’re all pushing to be the best we can.

Interview by
Jack Webb

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