Mann tak­ing step up from South­ern League in stride

Bath Chronicle - - SPORT - Henry Bur­ridge Sports Writer @Hjbur­ridge | 01225 322264 henry.bur­ridge@reach­plc.com

Adam Mann set out to prove him­self at the start of his Bath City ten­ure – and thus far he’s done just that. The at­tacker made the step-up from South­ern League sec­ond-tier Eve­sham United late in the sum­mer, hav­ing pre­vi­ously been all set to join Swin­don Su­per­ma­rine. To date he has taken that move in his stride, fea­tur­ing in all of the Ro­mans’ games so far and win­ning the man of the match award for a two as­sist dis­play in last week­end’s 4-1 win over Hunger­ford Town. Mann is glad to be re­pay­ing the faith shown in him by new boss Jerry Gill. “When I spoke to the gaf­fer in the sum­mer I said I’ve got to prove my­self to him,” he said. “I was rel­a­tively un­known, it was a late tran­si­tion. “He’s put faith in me and I just keep do­ing it. Hard work is prob­a­bly the ba­sics and that’s prob­a­bly what I do best, is hard work. “It’s all com­ing on and he’s a very good coach, so it all helps. “The other side of it is that the lads we’re play­ing with, they’re all ex-foot­ball League and for the likes of me and Joey [Raynes] who have come up, you can’t ask for any bet­ter than that with the ex­pe­ri­ence we’ve got around us, it makes a big dif­fer­ence as well.” But is there a se­cret for Mann, who scored 24 goals for Eve­sham last term? There might just be one for the 26-year-old, who hasn’t touched choco­late in 2018. “I’m stick­ing to my new years res­o­lu­tion and that played a big part,” he laughed. “I lost a bit of weight and that’s prob­a­bly why I can run around a bit more. “I wouldn’t rec­om­mend it to too many peo­ple. “You get used to it, a bit of a life­style change, but roll on Jan­uary 1 so I can carry on again.” Mann is also en­joy­ing fea­tur­ing in front of the Tw­er­ton Park faith­ful, whose num­bers have been grown early on so far this sea­son. “It’s bril­liant,” he said. “I’d say as well they’re very friendly, everyone comes and speaks. “They can see as well if you put the work in and you’re here to do a job and get re­sults. “I en­joy it as well, putting a smile on faces when I’m play­ing. Hope­fully that shines off. Everyone’s bril­liant, it’s a real friendly club. I was told that and it speaks vol­umes that it’s been like that as well.” His ef­forts have cer­tainly not gone un­no­ticed by the man­age­ment team. As­sis­tant Jim Rollo said: “He’s done bril­liantly, Manny. He came in re­ally late in pre-sea­son, when we were about to start. “He’s a good, hon­est lad and the team have re­ally taken to him. You can see it in his play, he’s re­ally sharp, en­er­getic, wants to get in the box and he wants to score goals. “And he wants to im­press at this level, I think you can see that in both Joe [Raynes] and Adam to­day, they both had real ter­rific games.” Be­fore his time with Eve­sham, Mann fea­tured for Glouces­ter City in Na­tional League North, among other clubs. The com­par­i­son of the North and South di­vi­sion is oft de­bated, with the north­ern set-up fea­tur­ing a host of ex-league clubs and larger av­er­age crowds. But on the whole, Mann feels the dif­fer­ence is more sub­tle. “It’s hard to de­scribe,” he said. “Glouces­ter, when we were there, it was a dif­fer­ent set-up. Bath have been in the Na­tional League and Glouces­ter have had strug­gles with the ground and cer­tain things. “That’s noth­ing against Glouces­ter, but that was the sit­u­a­tion we were in, and we did very well in that league. “I wouldn’t say the stan­dard is too dif­fer­ent, I’d say it’s prob­a­bly a bit more phys­i­cal to a de­gree, but we’re talking four or five years ago when there were dif­fer­ent sorts of clubs in there. “I’d say the North is very tough, but equally in the South, you look at the likes of Torquay, ex-foot­ball League clubs in there. “It is what it is, very sim­i­lar, but Bath and what they’re set out to do and what we’re look­ing to achieve, we are one of the higher-end clubs in this league, I’d say. “I think we can prove that with the per­for­mances that we’re putting out there. I haven’t feared any­one, to be hon­est. I haven’t seen any­one and tought ‘they’re go­ing to win this.’”

Adam Mann, who fin­ished the day with two as­sists, just misses out on a div­ing header as the Ro­mans went out in search of a fifth goal against Hunger­ford

Like Adam Mann, Joe Raynes has made the step up from a lower di­vi­sion

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