Exclusive: Preston Edwards on tough decision to leave Dulwich Hamlet

Preston Edwards has explained his decision to leave Dulwich Hamlet is because he wants to spend more time with his young family.

The goalkeeper, 30, had five years with the South London club and was making the commute from Bishop’s Stortford.

But Edwards will only play football part time next season as he devotes his attention to his children, aged four and one.

The maths teacher will switch from supply work to being based at a secondary school.

“I’ve had a few playing offers and I will definitely go for one that is really close to home so that I can be there for my family,” said the former Millwall shotstopper. “I’ve got such fond memories of Dulwich.

“I didn’t play in the promotion game [the 2018 Isthmian Premier League play-off] because I had a minor knee injury but it is still my fondest memory. Another highlight was saving a penalty against Bognor in the 2016 play-off semi-final.

“I won Player of the Season in 2018 and I was happy with that.

Dulwich Hamlet v Tonbridge Angels Vanarama National League South, Champion Hill, 29 February 2020

“And there was the time in a friendly against Palace where I’d parked my car behind someone and it went out over the tannoy that it was being towed away!

“I remember Sky Sports rang the next day while I was at school and asked if they could send a camera crew down and re-enact it. I asked the head and they said it was okay and to make sure the school was in the background. It must have been a slow news day for them to be asked to do that.”

Hamlet fans also had their motto of ‘no Preston, no party’.

“I’m still trying to find out where that one came from,” he said. “I wondered at first if they’d seen me somewhere on a night out doing something I shouldn’t.

“I think it was probably a bit like the ‘no Vardy, no party’ thing that Leicester fans used to say and that it has gone on from there.

“For the first home game in February that was the ‘no Preston, no party’ day. I think there was something like four people for the first one and it went up to about 20, all wearing T-shirts and masks.

“I’ve not got a bad word to say about Dulwich. I went into a bit more coaching last season and I need to say thank you to Gavin [Rose, manager]

“It wasn’t something I was looking to do but maybe it was because of the way I speak to the younger lads and give guidance.”

PICTURES BY KEITH GILLARD


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