Ainsley Richards

January 13, 2022

I have been around the sport from a very young age. My dad played DB for Milton Keynes Pioneers and Bedford Bombardiers in the 80’s and 90’s. It has always been a part of my life. My earliest memory of football is watching the 2000 NFL draft and seeing the Jets pick Chad Pennington.

 

My dad and I bonded for years by throwing a football and running routes. At 15, I decided to actually start playing myself. Some of my dad’s former team mates were coaching the Cats Adult team at the time, so it made sense for me to join the Cats Youth team. I was hooked from my first training session. I started out as a receiver, but I also put some time in as a DB too. We had a great success with two undefeated seasons and making it to the quarter finals.

 

I left the Cats Youth at 19 and joined the brand new Bury Saints. I had bulked up at bit, so tried my hand at TE and RB. We went undefeated and won the SFC 2 championship. I took a year out, but the Saints gained promotion again. I lost some weight and went back to playing, this time in the Premiership, at WR and RB.

 

I left the Saints and gained my Level 1 coaching qualification during a year out of football. I had just moved to Northamptonshire and so my dad and I joined the Northants Knights, to help them through their associate status. We helped on both sides of the ball and after 2 years, they achieved league status.

 

Covid happened and I took time away from football again, though not by choice. I saw an advert that the Cats Adult team was looking for coaches. I thought that it would be an honour to go back to where it all started for me. To be honest, it’s been the best decision I have ever made.