SHAQUILLE Lewys hopes to get back to where he was before Denton Town’s season was halted just as he and they gained momentum.
The Cheshire League League One outfit got back on the pitch with a friendly after the second national lockdown at Chadderton on Thursday, December 3.
League rules and regulations over different areas being in different tiers mean they are restricted to facing teams from the Greater Manchester area, at least until it is reviewed on December 16.
But just being able to get out on the pitch is a relief for striker Lewys, who admits football is a relief from his day job, which sees him manage the accounts of shopping centres like Manchester’s Arndale Centre and the Trafford Centre.
He told The Correspondent: “Before the friendly at Chadderton, I’d not played a game for about a month, so it was good to get back into action.
“While we weren’t allowed on the pitch, I just focussed on keeping my fitness up, so I went out for runs most days to keep on top of myself and keep in shape so when we did go back I was similar to how I was before.
“And everyone was going to be rusty when the football actually started again. It was always going to take time to get fully back up to speed – hopefully not too long.
“I work as a client accounts apprentice in city centre Manchester. I’m an accountant but for commercial properties, things like shopping centres.
“And football is definitely a release, there’s nothing I love more than playing football after work.”
Moss Side-based Shaquille, 21, was a talented youngster and spent time at several professional clubs, including Manchester United, Manchester City, Bury, Stoke City and Blackpool.
However, injuries meant he could not make it to the professional ranks – now he has his eye on firing Denton Town, who resumed their league campaign against Partington Village on Saturday, December 5, to promotion.
He added: “After injuries, I was in Sunday leagues but I’ve recently started to get back into it more properly.
“When I was a kid, I was at a few clubs from the age of seven – mostly at Bury.
“Now my aim is to help Denton to promotion and scoring goals. At the start of the season, I set my target at 20.
“We started well but things didn’t go our way for the first few games. In the two games before the halt, though, something just clicked and we played really well.
“I was hoping to carry that through and start how I finished before but it did feel like we were starting all over again.”