Banks takes his opportunity

Banks takes his opportunity

Posted on April 13, 2011 in 'News'

Goalkeeper Andy Banks has played a big part in ECU Joondalup’s rise to fourth in the Premier League after the first month of competition. The retirement of former Portsmouth shot-stopper Andy Petterson last year opened the door for Banks to step into the senior line-up where the 34-year has been in terrific touch. “Well for me this season is going great,” said Banks. “I worked hard in the pre-season, had a decent Night Series and took that form into the first few games in the league which was pleasing.”

Joondalup came from behind last time out with Ian McMurray and Oliver McGee scoring to see off Cockburn City 2-1. “We had to bounce back from a disappointing display the week before against Armadale,” commented Banks. “We dominated early proceedings but found ourselves one-nil down at the break. We had a strong breeze behind are backs in the second half which helped, and we got the two goals to go on and win. It could have been four or five in the end but we’ll take the win.”

One aspect of Joondalup that has particularly impressed Banks this year is the increased competition for places in the first eleven. “It’s a lot more professional this year and the lads are responding to it,” the ‘keeper said. “It’s good that Syd has put a strong side together and there’s competition for places. In the past the bench has been made up of young lads from the reserves, whereas now if anyone has a bad game they could find themselves on the bench for the next game.”

Banks, whose background includes a stint with English club Preston North End, is a key figure in the plans of Joondalup boss Syd Amphlett. “Andy came to use last season and has waited patiently for his opportunity in the side. He has been approached by a number of clubs but has shown loyalty to me and the club,” said Amphlett. “Andy is well liked around the club and we believe he is one of the best ‘keepers in the league. He has seen we are trying to build a winning mentality at the club and he wants to be a part of it.”

Joondalup travels to Bayswater City this weekend when another three points will consolidate the northern suburbs a top three place. “It will be a tough game on a tight pitch, and they will be looking to bounce back from last week’s heavy defeat (5-1 to Balcatta),” said Banks. “They have some tricky players and we will certainly have to keep Gavin Knight, who I know from the UK, quiet up front. But the boys are confident after the start we have had and we just need to keep the momentum going.” Joondalup visits Bayswater at Frank Drago Reserve from 3.00pm on Saturday.