Our ‘Junior Chat’ feature is all about showcasing our thriving Junior section and in the spotlight here is our U12’s Youth. The Youth team compete in the Surrey Youth League. They are coached by Alex Sykes and managed by Wayne McKnight.
We spoke to Wayne to get the lowdown on why he chose Ascot and the blue shed nostalgia, the Youth’ season so far, the highs and lows of the squad PLUS winning a cup final.
2022/23 season so far
We are having an amazing season so far the team sit third in the Premier Elite Division of the Surrey Youth League with games in hand and after losing our first league game we have now won every game in both league and cup with the best defensive record in the league and a County Cup semi-final to play in January.
What brought you to Ascot?
I’m not sure how it started sixteen years ago but my eldest son never liked rugby so football was the next option but back then we never had the facilities we do now. I still remember the blue shed that if it rained you moved your seats.
What do you enjoy most about coaching the Youth?
I most definitely enjoy watching the players developing within the team over the years, I’ve come across some amazing players and parents in my team at Ascot.
What’s been your highlight of the Youth tenure so far?
Has to be seeing the boys grow in confidence in their abilities as we won the SYL cup last year. The team grew round by round, taking on higher ranked teams with great skill, tenacity, teamwork and humility when winning.
Have there been any moments of adversity for the Youth and how have you overcome that?
I would say the SYL Final when the opposition came back twice to level, we went on to win with a last minute winner showing the boys never give up mentality and togetherness.
Something to celebrate about the Youth
The boys are are multi-talented bunch of sportsman with some representing their counties at cricket, athletics and more.
One more thing…
The boys are a credit to themselves and the club and epitomise the qualities of fair play, working hard for each other and play an amazing style of football in the right way, I’m so lucky to work with the coaches, Alex and Neil, they deserve so much credit for the boys development and enjoyment of the game and with a great set of supportive parents supporting from the side-lines. We hope the team can fulfil the potential they have for the season ahead for well deserved silverware.
Good luck for the rest of your season, Youth!
The U12’s Youth shirts are sponsored by AiSCOUT, their training kits by Radines and their tracksuits by Windsor Fracture Clinic for the 2022/23 season.
If you’d like to have your team featured in Junior Chat, please get in contact with our Marketing & Media Manager, Abi.