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   Wednesday, 4 December, 2002, 17:00 GMT
Keister's second chance

Keister in action for Walsall, one of his former English clubs
Keister believes S'Leone will go to Tunisia
Sierra Leone international John Keister hopes his stint with English non-league side Margate will be his springboard back into the football league.

He scored the winner from the penalty spot to help his club beat Third Division Leyton Orient in the first round of the FA Cup.

"I'm very confident in my own ability and I can still do a job [at a higher level] but at the end of the day it's for other people to make that decision.

"I can only go out and represent Margate," he told BBC Sport Online.

After stints at Walsall, Shrewsbury and Stevenage, the English-born midfielder has been with Margate for two seasons and is enjoying his time there.

"From the first time I signed for Margate the fans have taken to me," he said.

"This [the FA Cup win] is one of the high points of my career."

The 32-year-old midfielder seems to be having an Indian summer.

Not only is Keister a Margate favourite, he is helping Sierra Leone in its bid to qualify for the 2004 African Nations Cup.

The Leone Stars won their first two games against Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.

Keiser believes his national team-mates have put the country in an excellent position to get to Tunisia.

"This is going to be my last campaign but we are going to give it a long hard go.

"We have Morocco in a group match in Freetown next March and a win could give us the edge to qualify."

But in the meantime, fans of Margate hope that his fairy-tale FA Cup run could lead their club to heights never reached before.

Margate are in second-round action against Division Two high-flyers Cardiff on 7 December.

See also:

27 Nov 02 | Africans abroad
14 Oct 02 | Cup of Nations
Links to more Africans abroad stories are at the foot of the page.


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