Wainwright excited about Durham opportunity
D'Andre Wainwright is determined to grasp his opportunity at new club Durham City during the upcoming campaign.
The 20-year-old striker has joined the Northern League Division 2 side and is excited about the challenge of playing at the English non-League level.
“I definitely want to grasp this opportunity with both hands,” Wainwright told The Royal Gazette.
“Every player wants to have the opportunity to play semi-professionally or professionally and so I am excited about this opportunity.
“But I am also trying to keep a level head and not get too worked up because this is just the beginning.”
Wainwright was recommended to Durham by scouts after being spotted playing for local club side Somerset Trojans.
He agreed to join the club in April having impressed the coaching staff.
“We are delighted that D'Andre has agreed to join Durham for next season,” read a club statement. “D'Andre is a powerful, goalscorer who has represented Bermuda at international level.”
Wainwright, who has represented Bermuda both at the under-20 and senior levels, added: “I didn't really want to play football in Bermuda anymore so when they contacted me it was a no-brainer. I was like, ‘Ya, it's time to go'”
In the interim, the grandson of former goalkeeper Dennis Wainwright Sr, who was a member of the Bermuda team that won the silver medal at the 1967 Pan American Games in Winnipeg, Canada, has been keeping himself in shape.
“They want me to come out there ready basically,” Wainwright said.
“I have been going to different sessions with various coaches, running on my own and doing a lot of core work to try and keep sharp. I also touch the ball every day.”
Although he is keen to play overseas, Wainwright admits that he will miss his former team-mates at Trojans, where he spent the past two seasons after joining from Somerset Eagles.
“I am going to miss my former team-mates who I have been kicking with a little bit this summer,” he added.
“They have been talking about me going to England to play and giving me encouragement so, of course, I am going to miss them.”
Durham received a reprieve to stay in the Northern League Division 2 despite having been at the bottom of the standings after the English FA and the National League System reached a consensus to end the season early because of the outbreak of Covid-19.
As a result, all results were expunged, meaning no promotion or relegation.
Durham will start the new season under new manager Didier Agathe, the former Celtic and Aston Villa defender, who will also head up the club's academy.
The Frenchman won multiple league and cup honours with Celtic and also enjoyed successful Champions League campaigns and a memorable Uefa Cup run, which ended in a defeat to José Mourinho's Porto in the final.