Shane who? New boss plots Stowmarket revival

SHANE who? That was the reaction among the non-league footballing fraternity following the appointment of Stowmarket Town’s new manager.

Shane Austin’s name may not be familiar to many at Ridgeons League level, but he is hoping to lead a resurgence at the struggling Division One side.

The players were told of Austin’s appointment after thumping Fakenham 5-0 on Saturday, to record back-to-back wins in the league after seven straight defeats that led to previous manager Steve Jay leaving Greens Meadow by mutual consent last month.

Austin had three years in charge at Kingsley Healthcare SIL side Claydon before taking a year out and then returned last season as joint manager with Mark Banthorpe at Bramford United, who are currently third-from-bottom of SIL Division One.

The 38-year-old admitted it was a big step up for him.

“Very much so, but I am just glad that Stowmarket have given me the opportunity to manage at this level,” he said.

Austin, who was not at Saturday’s match and met the players for the first time on Tuesday evening, has seen Stowmarket play three times this season, which started in such disappointing fashion after they had been in the promotion shake-up for most of last season.

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“After the start Stowmarket had last year I can only assume they have got some good players, and I think they are in a false position.

“Everyone will get a chance to prove themselves in the first three or four weeks, and I will then take it from there.”

Stowmarket are still second-from-bottom with just six points, and although Austin is realistic enough to know that winning promotion this season is going to be extremely difficult he said: “Never say never – I will be looking to win every game.

“With the right motivation and a change of mentality there is no reason why we won’t start to move up the table.”

Austin’s first match in charge is tomorrow’s Ridgeons League First Division Knock-out Cup first round tie at Ipswich Wanderers, and he admitted: “The fact it is not a league game will mean there is not so much pressure for the players. Hopefully they can go out and show me what they can do.”

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