The secret of Burgess Hill’s success: Part 1

Burgess Hill v Whitstable. Burgess Hill are Ryman Isthmian Football League South Division Champions 14/15. Pic Steve Robards SUS-150420-130013001
Burgess Hill v Whitstable. Burgess Hill are Ryman Isthmian Football League South Division Champions 14/15. Pic Steve Robards SUS-150420-130013001

We asked Burgess Hill Town players and staff five questions about their incredible season. Here is the first part with Andy Pearson, Dan Pearse, Stuart Tuck, Paul Dollner and Pat Harding.

Andy Pearson (Defender)

Andy Pearson, Burgess Hill Town

Andy Pearson, Burgess Hill Town

What has been the secret to this incredible season?

Our team spirit has been excellent all season

How important has Ian Chapman’s management been?

He has been brilliant all season. He know’s the game inside out. He’s mixed the squad perfectly with youth and experience.

Dan Pearse, Burgess Hill Town

Dan Pearse, Burgess Hill Town

Can you name one particular highlight from the season?

Aldershot in the FA Trophy was the highlight for me. To go there and win was brilliant and to get a clean sheet just topped it off.

Did you know from the start of the season this was a special bunch of players and that it was going to be such an incredible season?

All the players knew each other before this season so we knew we had a great group of lads but I don’t think anyone would have thought it would have been this good.

Stuart Tuck, Burgess Hill Town

Stuart Tuck, Burgess Hill Town

Which player has stood out for you?

You can’t single out one player, it’s been a great team effort but if I had to say one player I’d choose my keeper, Josh James, he’s helped me out of trouble a fair few times.

Dan Pearse (Midfielder)

What has been the secret to this incredible season?

Paul Dollner, Burgess Hill Town

Paul Dollner, Burgess Hill Town

Togetherness, team spirit and plenty of hardwork with the combination of youth and experience.

How important has Ian Chapman’s management been?

Crucial. Great man management and team selection in big games

Can you name one particular highlight from the season?

Aldershot game. Beating a professional side from the Conference was excellent.

Did you know from the start of the season this was a special bunch of players and that it was going to be such an incredible season?

Pat Harding, Burgess Hill Town

Pat Harding, Burgess Hill Town

Signed midway through the season!

Which player has stood out for you?

Stuart Tuck – great determination and aggression when he played

Stuart Tuck (Player / Assistant)

What has been the secret to this incredible season?

Great team spirit andclub morale

How important has Ian Chapman’s management been?

Instrumental in not just bringing the team together but the whole Club together

Can you name one particular highlight from the season?

Too many to name just one, but playing and competing with the teams from higher levels in the Cup games. Also the draw at Faversham Town felt like we were in touching distance of the league title.

Did you know from the start of the season this was a special bunch of players and that it was going to be such an incredible season?

Nobody can hand on heart say this was definitely going to happen, however over the last two years we have had a good look at the league and with the personnel that we’d brought together, we were quietly confident we would have a chance.

Which player has stood out for you?

Again to many to mention as so many strong performers, however, from me I would have to say Will Miles. To come straight from youth team football and play so many games to a consistently high level has been incredible. Also he’s kept me out of the team!!!

Paul Dollner (Coach)

What has been the secret to this incredible season?

No secret: just plain old Hard Work. On and off the pitch.

From planning sessions and planning match days to total preparation and discussions about team and selection by us all, to the overall support from all off the pitch.

We have ALL tried to do things as they would be done as if we were full time professionals.

I also think that momentum and belief have seen us over the line on the pitch in many close games.

How important has Ian Chapman’s management been?

Totally... He has a belief in himself and in us all that has bred success. He asks, he listens then decides and he take responsibility for the decisions made. I also think that behind him - we or I do - feel he has brought his many years of football knowledge to the benefit of us all at the club. Again both on and off the pitch.

Can you name one particular highlight from the season?

I have two specific highlights: firstly or just pipping my second highlight was the Aldershot game!

I did my A licence coaching badge with Rob Scott, the then Aldershot manager and it’s always good to be part of a team that wins a big game but a team that wins as an underdog but more so against a fellow coach....

Secondly was the Sutton game as their Manager made a point of saying hello to me before The game - I’ve known him from my old club and more so, congratulating me and us all afterwards. Really nice...

These were 2 Massive games that have really stood out this season for me as a coach...

Did you know from the start of the season this was a special bunch of players and that it was going to be such an incredible season?

I knew straight away from Pre Season training that we had a bunch of lads who (a) respected us as coaches and manager etc and (b) they all have and all do train so so well... We put on sessions - they listen - they try things and in turn they challenge us and the end result has always been 100% effort and commitment in training. Can’t ask for any more. When you think they’ve all Or we’ve all been working all day, the training intensity has never waned off! Very impressive and it has made it all enjoyable, never a chore...

Which player has stood out for you?

Can I name a top three? Andy Pearson, Neil Watts - up until he got injured and Greg Luer... They’ve All made an impression on me for many different reasons but, a top three is hard but listed above.

Pat Harding (Striker)

What has been the secret to this incredible season?

Being a team. The whole group as one getting on and being a unit.

How important has Ian Chapman’s management been?

The Manager has been responsible for the whole Club set up, so very important. Tactically the best I’ve played under.

Can you name one particular highlight from the season?

Beating Merstham 4-3 (and scoring the winner!). We were 2-1 down at half time and being battered then turned it around and knocked them out of the title race.

Did you know from the start of the season this was a special bunch of players and that it was going to be such an incredible season?

We knew most of the team so knew we’d all get on. I thought we’d be top 5 but not top 1! Been the best season for enjoyment in my career – the team spirit and winning has made that.

Which player has stood out for you?

Andy Pearson deserves player of the season. People haven’t really noticed how crucial he has been and he deserves the credit.