Stokes' Week To Remember

AFTER making the first senior appearance of his career in the Carling Cup victory over Sheffield Wednesday, young midfielder Tony Stokes was back on Reserve team duty on Wednesday, captaining Kevin Keen's side to a 1-0 win over Coventry.

The 18-year-old reflected on a hectic few days, admitting that his first-team debut had given him the taste for more senior football.

"It was a great experience with the first-team," exclaimed Tony. "I was going to get on for 15 minutes, but then Sheffield Wednesday pulled it back to 3-1 and then 3-2 and the manager told me to sit back down.

"Hayden Mullins was going to get on instead and to be honest I felt gutted. But then David Bellion scored and Hayden was told to sit back down.

"The manager then said to me and Hogan Ephraim that we were going on. The feeling was just unbelievable.

"The game was really flowing and I managed to get seven or eight touches. In my very first touch I went through a player and I enjoyed every second of it.

"I got near enough ten minutes when you add in the stoppage time, but it still went by so quickly. The supporters were great to me though. They were really noisy all night and when I put my first challenge in they all cheered.

"I loved all that and it was a great night."

Tony hardly had time to settle from his trip to Sheffield when he was back on the team coach the next evening travelling to face Coventry as part of a young Reserve team. So young in fact that the Academy graduate was made captain.

"It was weird to think that I was the oldest player in the side," he said. "But it was nice to be made captain and get the win for the Reserves.

"It's been a tough few days. We travelled to Sheffield on the Monday, got back at about half past two on Wednesday morning and then I was back travelling up to Coventry Wednesday afternoon.

"But I'm certainly not complaining, because making my first-team debut is a dream come true and hopefully I can push on from here and get another outing for the senior team.

"I've got a day off Thursday to let everything sink in!"