The famous Bridgend tour down the years
The famous Bridgend tour down the years

CASUALS LEGEND PROFILE
Nick Markham

Nick before his final Casuals game (in goal!) on 9 May 1998

Nick remains the only Casual to score a hat-trick on his debut - but he still finished on the losing side! Two games later he struck another treble in a 4-0 win over Sloane Square Rangers and he finished up as the Casuals' second top scorer in the club's first season despite playing only 8 games.
 
However the Tory Councillor soon established himself at the heart of the Casuals back four where his aerial ability and strength in the tackle proved a real asset.
 
A great clubman and committed Casual he captained the side on 17 occasions and racked up an impressive 115 appearances over seven seasons.
 
Nick was a hugely enthusiastic Bridgend tourist and made the trip four times, and was solely responsible for adding Wibbly Wobbly to the post match bar games. His offer of 'champagne for everyone' in a Bridgend nightclub earned him the nickname 'The Bollinger Bunny' the latter being a reference to quite horrid grey tracksuit he wore while warming up.
 
Casuals Appearances/Goals: 115 / 15
1991/92 8 Games / 9 goals
1992/93 8 / 1
1993/94 10 / 1
1994/95 29 / 2
1995/96 20 / 1
1996/97 19 / 0
1997/98 21 / 1
 
Number of Bridgend Tours: 4 (1993, 94, 95, 97)
 
Honours: 92/93 West End League Division C Cup Runners up, 1995/96 London Commercial League Division 7 Runners up.
 
Debut: October 1991 v Rio Spartan 'B' in West End League Division C. Casuals lost 5-4 despite Nick's treble and a goal from Phil Malcolm.
 
Final game: 9 May 1998 v Evershed 3rds in London Commercial League Div 4. Nick played in goal as Mark Ferris was away and the Casuals lost 3-2.
 
Line up: Markham, Richards, Neil Williams, Phillips, Shaikh, Brailsford, Michael Rootes, Welch, Cates (Nash), Malcolm, Bartlett (Smith). Micheal Rootes and Phil Malcolm got the goals.
 
Preferred Position: Centre back (or centre forward when I was feeling fit!) 
 
Nickname: I seem to remember my bunny suit being particularly popular, but not sure if a nickname ever came out of it 
 
Birthplace/Date of Birth:  Haywards Heath (Sussex) 13/02/1968 
 
Resides:  Surrey 
 
Occupation:  Chief Executive, Top Up TV 
 
How did you come to join the Casuals:  Introduced by Alex Aiken / Phil Malcolm 
 
A hat-trick on your debut! What do you remember about the early days of the Casuals?  That for the first few games I couldn't stop scoring (I scored a hat-trick in my 2nd game as well!) Unfortunately it went down hill from there! There was always a great atmosphere in the early days and a feeling that we had created a great team from scratch.
 
Unfortunately the Casuals never won a thing during your seven seasons with the club. The closest you ever came to a winners medal was the 1993 Cup Final against Rangers Inter - should we have won that day? Definitely, I sent a header over the bar that I should have scored from and we had numerous other chances that we didn't put away. 

SO CLOSE: Nick puts THAT cup final header just over the bar

Why did you leave the Casuals in 1998: I was sold to Real Madrid (the Casuals refused to sell me to a competing English team). Oh and I was also traveling like crazy with work, had just had my 2nd child and couldn't fit everything in unfortunately. 
 
Who else did you introduce to the club: Getting old so can't remember, but there were a few others! I do remember introducing the Wibbly Wobbly drinking game to the club though!

KING OF WIBBLY WOBBLY: Nick wows 'em at Bridgend Town
 
Highlight of Casuals Career: First season when I was uber fit and scoring freely (I had just broken-up with my girlfriend and so was playing 3 times a week). Oh and shoving food in Michael Rootes' and Phil Malcolm's coat pockets when they weren't looking at the Xmas dinners
 
Lowlight of Casuals career: When Michael and the rest of the team got their revenge on me (for the above) on a Casuals tour! 
 
Worst player you played alongside: Mark MacGregor
 
Funniest player: Ertan Djemal
 
Most memorable Casuals goal you scored: Scoring from a 40 yard tackle on a Bridgend tour.
 
Funniest thing you have seen on a Casuals night out: Ertan pulling girls - he was definitely the ugliest Casuals player, but also the most successful! Oh and Phil Malcolm dancing was pretty hilarious as well.
 
Favourite Bridgend tour memory: Playing wibbly wobbly on the 1st ever tour 
 
What did you really think of Phil Malcolm: I have to be unpopular here and say that I actually liked him! He was a surprisingly good manager as well! 
 
Are you still playing: Afraid not
 
How would you like to be remembered: As a committed player and a good laugh on and off the pitch.
 
Best thing about being a Casual: The team spirit 
 
Message to the current team: Good luck - I hope that the team spirit is as good today as it was at the beginning!
 
 
Q&A completed on 25 Oct 2008    
            

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