CANVEY Island centurion Jay Curran said he was “over the moon” at surpassing the 100-goal mark on the day he was made club captain.
When Curran, 29, equalised after 36 minutes against Bognor Regis Town on Saturday it was the 100th time he had wheeled away in celebration for the Gulls. He added the 101st before the game was out.
Curran follows in the footsteps of club greats Andy Jones and Lee Boylan, but says he isn’t finished yet – with tonight’s opponents East Thurrock United next on his hit list.
“I wanted to get it off my back early on so I am pleased to reach 100 so early,” he said. “I knew I was on 99 and a few people have asked if I thought about it over the summer, but to be honest I didn’t.
“I knew it was always going to come, but to get it on my first day as captain made it a bit more special.”
Curran said manager Danny Heale told him he wanted him to skipper the side on the day of the Bognor Regis match.
“I spoke to Danny in the week before and he announced it in the dressing room on Saturday. It came as a bit of a surprise but I can’t wait to lead the team out again.
“I was always scoring goals when I was growing up and always wanted to be top scorer in the team. Four or five years ago I started to move to the right hand side and I wasn’t scoring as often, but the last few seasons I have been on the right of a 4-3-3 and I have done well.”
The hot-shot said he always looks forward to facing tonight’s opponents, East Thurrock, and has an extra reason to want to do well against them.
“East Thurrock is my local team. I can walk to their ground from my house and we want to go there and get three points, plus I would love to beat my local team!”
Curran is aiming for 15-20 goals from wide positions this year but remains confident the team can push for a play-off place.
He said: “We are capable of reaching the play-offs I am sure of that. We will give anyone a game and everyone here knows that.”
And Heale has backed Canvey to beat “bogey team” East Thurrock United and take all three points tonight.
Canvey have lost their last three matches against the Rocks and have not been successful against their rivals at Rookery Hill since the Thurrock side were promoted to the Ryman Premier back in 2011/12, losing all three league games.
Both sides come into the match off the back of impressive opening day wins, the Gulls beating Bognor Regis Town and East Thurrock United defeating AFC Hornchurch, and Heale knows his side have a tough match on their hands.
“They got a very good result at the weekend,” said Heale. “And we must look to push past our recent poor form against them and try to get a win.
“But we are a different kettle of fish this year. If we play anything like we did on Saturday tonight then I think we will win the match. We need consistency but we won’t be taking East Thurrock for granted.”
Heale confirmed Victor Osobu is likely to be fit although he picked up a knee injury in Saturday’s win.
Meanwhile Rocks boss John Coventry said he was hopeful of having Nicky Symons back in the squad, after he pulled out of Saturday’s squad on Friday after being admitted to hospital suffering with kidney dehydration.
“Nicky is an important player for us,” said Symons. “We had little time to prepare without him for the first game and we hope he is fit. If not we will find a way to manager without him.
“Manu (Osei) and Reece (Harris) did very well for us on their debuts and so did Ben (Wood) so if we can play well again there is no reason we can’t beat Canvey.”