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Former Norwich City player Josh Dawkin stepping up recovery from broken leg in the Bostik League North Division with Soham Town Rangers



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“I didn’t think I would ever play again.” On April 22, 2017, Josh Dawkin broke his right leg playing for St Ives Town, in their final league game of the 2016/17 season, away at Chippenham Town, writes Alex Moss.

It has been a long road to recovery for the former professional, who was on the books at Norwich City during their double promotion from League One to the Premier League, and represented Wales at Under-17 and Under-19 level.

Now 27, Dawkin ended a near two-year lay off earlier this month when he came off the bench as a substitute for Soham Town Rangers, playing the final half an hour in their 4-0 defeat at Grays Athletic.

SOHAM: Football - Soham Town Rangers v Maldon & Tiptree new player Josh Dawkins.ROBBIE MASON SOHAM PLAYER-MANAGER Picture Mark Westley. (7455225)
SOHAM: Football - Soham Town Rangers v Maldon & Tiptree new player Josh Dawkins.ROBBIE MASON SOHAM PLAYER-MANAGER Picture Mark Westley. (7455225)

Last weekend, the midfielder featured for almost an hour for Soham, who he has joined on loan until the end of the season, in their 2-0 reverse at home to Maldon & Tiptree.

It has been a challenging couple of years for Dawkin, who has also had spells at the likes of Cambridge United, Braintree Town and Lowestoft Town, before joining St Ives in 2016 and picking up the Players’ Player of the Season award after netting 17 goals from out wide in his debut campaign.

“I broke my right leg in the last game of the season with St Ives,” Dawkin recalls. “It was at Chippenham and I think we lost 3-0.

“It was just before half-time. I broke my right leg, the tibia and fibia, it was really bad. I was in surgery for seven-and-a-half hours and on crutches for six months.

SOHAM: Football - Soham Town Rangers v Maldon & Tiptree new player Josh Dawkins.ROBBIE MASON SOHAM PLAYER-MANAGER Picture Mark Westley. (7468642)
SOHAM: Football - Soham Town Rangers v Maldon & Tiptree new player Josh Dawkins.ROBBIE MASON SOHAM PLAYER-MANAGER Picture Mark Westley. (7468642)

“It was the worst break the doctors had ever seen. I lost quite a lot of my fibia and it has taken a long time to come back.

“I think I would have regretted it if I didn’t try and give it a go. All I’ve ever done since I was a kid was play football.

“I was in the professional game and was quite good back in the day. I’m all right now, but if I gave it a go to come back and if it didn’t work out at least I could say I gave it a go.”

Dawkin’s 30-minute cameo against Grays two weeks ago was his first competitive game in 665 days. During that long break on the sidelines, he admits there have been times when he thought he may never cross the white line again.

“It was good,” he said. “To be fair, going through what I have it has taken a lot of effort to get back.

SOHAM: Football - Soham Town Rangers v Maldon & Tiptree new player Josh Dawkins.ROBBIE MASON SOHAM PLAYER-MANAGER Picture Mark Westley. (7468645)
SOHAM: Football - Soham Town Rangers v Maldon & Tiptree new player Josh Dawkins.ROBBIE MASON SOHAM PLAYER-MANAGER Picture Mark Westley. (7468645)

“It has been a long 22 months and I didn’t think I would ever play again. I was a little bit rusty, but you’re going to be after being out for so long.

“It was great to wake up on a Saturday and know you’re going to play football.

“When I was at Norwich as a professional we had the promotions from League One to the Championship to the Premier League.

“I was a professional in the Premier League and experienced open top buses in front of 30,000 people. To go to then thinking you’ll never play again, sat in a hospital room and go 22 months without playing, to get back out there is fantastic.”