Feb 21 2013 by Jon Batham, Harrow Observer
RICHARD Jolly insisted this week it was a case of club before personal glory as he approaches footballing retirement.
Wealdstone’s newly-wed leading scorer needs 10 more goals if he is to reach the magic 300 career strikes before hanging up his boots at the end of the season.
However, returning to action post-honeymoon in Saturday’s 2-1 win over fellow promotion contenders Margate, Jolly made clear his career-long dream to get Stones back into the upper reaches of non-league football was a bigger motivation than personal glory.
He said: “It would be a great milestone for me to reach 300 goals, but if I don’t make it I don’t make it. As long as we get promoted I’m not bothered.
“More than anything I want to go out winning something or at least getting the club, the fans and [manager] Gordon [Bartlett] back to the sort of level they deserve to be. If we win every game between now and the end of the season and I don’t score, yes I will be a bit disappointed as I want to get goals, but I would feel I had done what I wanted to do and that I had completed the task I had when I signed here all those years ago when I was 18, which was to get the club to a higher division.”
Jolly has found the target 15 times so far this season, though this pales into insignificance against his 48 goals in the last campaign when he was the leading scorer in the country, never mind at The Vale.
Those statistics have led a small minority of Stones’ fans to question whether the prolific marksman has gone on a year too long and already has his head in life after football.
It is a charge he emphatically denies, though he admits recent preparations for tying the knot with wife Rachel did affect his form during Stones’ post-Christmas form slump.
However, with those stresses behind him he insists he is ready for the final push.
He added: “It is not about me retiring it is about us going up.
“I know some people might think I have got one eye on retirement already and I don’t look bothered, but nothing could be further from the truth.
“I was not looking bothered last year apparently, but no one cared because I scored loads of goals.
“I’m not looking bothered this year and people are moaning, but we are in a different situation now as people expect
“The honeymoon was rejuvenating as before I went away I had a lot of stress planning the wedding and everything, so for the last couple of games I wasn’t really focused and that probably showed in my performance.
“So hopefully I can add a spark now I am back and get us over the line.”