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Matt's hungry to make up for lost time
8:00am Thursday 27th December 2012 in Conference Premier
RED-HOT Kidderminster Harriers hitman Jamille Matt has warned Blue Square Bet Premier defenders he’s only going to get better, after his blistering return to action in the Blue Square Bet Premier.
The 23-year-old has been making up for lost time following his nine-month enforced absence from football.
Goals against Newport, Wrexham and Dartford have cemented Harriers’ play-off bid and set the league alight.
It’s an emphatic return for the young man, who was having a brilliant 2011-12 season for Harriers before an England C call-up revealed passport and work permit problems.
It took the UK Border Agency nine months to clear up the matter, despite the efforts of Harriers and his local MP to speed it along.
Despite his dramatic impact on the side, Matt believes he is still trying to obtain full sharpness after only a handful of starts.
“Personally I don’t think I am back at full match fitness, I have blowing at the end of games but I will take scoring goals when I am not fully match sharp,” said the hitman.
“I am back now and all I want to do is concentrate on my football, put the nine months I missed out of the way and try to make it like I’ve never been missing.”
Matt’s return has sparked intense speculation about his future, with clubs such as West Bromwich, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Leeds United, Northampton, Leicester and Sheffield United all thought to have watched him.
The Jamaican-born hitman admits the hope of playing competitive football for Harriers again and the support of the club and fans, helped keep his spirits up during the low periods.
Manager Steve Burr and assistant Gary Whild were supportive of the striker during his crisis and the club even extended his deal in the summer, despite uncertainty over his future.
He said: “It’s not a nice thing being away for reasons you cannot control yourself.
“But I could not affect what was going on at the time and the only thing I can affect now is doing my best on the pitch.
“That’s all I’ve been trying to do, give 100 per cent every game and as long as I am playing for Kidderminster Harriers that’s what I will be doing.
He added: “Playing football is something I have always loved.
“I could play with my mates but it wasn’t the same as being in a competitive match, with that extra edge when you’re up against a centre half and pitting your wits against him.
“I said it to the chairman I will be a different animal when I return and I’ve been trying to prove that.
“I cannot speak highly enough of everyone at the club; all I’ve received are supportive messages.
“When you are having a bad day a little message from the manager can help you get through it and make you look forward to playing again. Everyone has been fantastic.”
The striker only enhanced his reputation as the hottest property in non-league football with his brace in Saturday’s 5-1 demolition of Dartford.
Chey Dunkley had opened the scoring but Jacob Erskine levelled for the Kent side.
Matt struck in both halves, before Mike Williams and Lee Vaughan ensured Harriers’ biggest win of the campaign.
Harriers, who played Hereford United in a Boxing Day derby yesterday, go to Forest Green Rovers on Saturday (5.15pm ko) in a clash televised on Premier Sports.
They then entertain Hereford on New Year’s Day at Aggborough (3pm ko).
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