Westies skipper hangs up boots

Jethro Warren (left) in action for Westfield against Little Common earlier this season. Picture by Simon Newstead

Jethro Warren (left) in action for Westfield against Little Common earlier this season. Picture by Simon Newstead

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Footballer Jethro Warren has decided to hang up his boots after a second nasty injury in weeks.

The Westfield captain has had to take time off work after both injuries, costing him money as he doesn’t receive sick pay.

“I’m going to stop for good,” he said. “I did promise the wife after the first one if it happened again I would stop. If I was 23 it might be a bit different, but I’m nearly 35 and I’ve got two kids to think about.”

A self-employed scaffolder, Warren had to take a couple of days off work after breaking his nose during the Sussex Senior Cup tie away to Hastings United on November 19.

He then fractured a bone in his hand in just his second game back against Broadbridge Heath on December 14, although he didn’t realise he had a problem until finding he couldn’t grip anything at work two days later.

A subsequent trip to hospital revealed a split down the middle of his fourth metacarpal. Warren will return to hospital in three weeks’ time to see if the break is healing properly. If not, he may require an operation.

“It’s not too bad, but I can’t bend my fingers completely,” he continued. “Even just picking up a cup of coffee, I can’t physically do it.”

Warren, who has recently moved to Battle, says he has “got by” financially having done a bit of work for a couple of friends - anything he can do one-handed such as stripping wallpaper - and his wife has done a few more hours at the school where she works part-time.

Warren grew up in Etchingham and moved to Robertsbridge aged 16. He joined Wadhurst United soon after his 17th birthday and spent the best part of a decade with the club, once finishing second in Sussex County Football League Division Three.

He had a season playing for his brother at Hastings Rangers and six months with Hawkhurst United before having a season at Hastings United in the Ryman Premier, during which he won the goal of the season award for a 40-yard chip against Ramsgate.

A couple of seasons at Bexhill United were disrupted by a broken foot and dislocated knee, and he has spent the last two years at Westfield - which he describes as “the best club I’ve played for by a million miles”.

Warren says he might still do a bit of training with Westfield and plans to watch a few games, but will concentrate on running Sedlescombe Rangers under-11s. He said he would be keen on moving into management at some stage.