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Last Updated: Tuesday, 17 October 2006, 18:45 GMT 19:45 UK
Gayle realises hat-trick dream
By Paul Fletcher

Marcus Gayle
To get a hat-trick was of my remaining ambitions

Marcus Gayle
A long, long wait ended for Marcus Gayle at Aldershot on Saturday - he finally scored a hat-trick.

The veteran striker scored three times for the Shots after coming on as a 62nd-minute substitute.

Gayle played in the 1998 World Cup for Jamaica and was a key member of the Wimbledon Crazy Gang that terrorised Premiership defences.

But despite more than 500 appearances as a professional footballer he was still waiting for his first hat-trick.

Gayle finally realised one of his few remaining playing ambitions at the Rec, scoring after 67, 71 and 77 minutes to turn a 2-1 deficit to Kidderminster into a much-needed 4-2 victory.

What's more, his hat-trick has been officially timed at 9 mins 39 secs, making it the fastest in the history of the Shots.

"I still cannot believe it happened," Gayle told BBC Sport.

"I was fortunate enough to make the Jamaica squad in 98. I played in the final group game against Japan, which we won.

"That was one of the highlights of my career - along with Saturday's freakish hat-trick."

Gayle made his league debut as a Brentford player in 1988 and has also turned out for Wimbledon, Rangers and Watford.

He struggled to win over the fans at Watford after Gianluca Vialli signed him for 900,000 in August 2001.

Gayle managed just seven goals in 41 outings in his first season at Vicarage Road.

It was widely thought when Vialli left in the summer of 2002 that Gayle would soon follow but, despite spending his entire career either as a left winger or a centre forward, he emerged as a central defender in Ray Lewington's new-look side the following season.

Gayle had not played there before but thrived in the position and went on to win the player of the season award at the club.

"I think I proved the doubters wrong at Watford," added Gayle, who advises youngsters to learn as many positions as possible.

Marcus Gayle
I still want to score an overhead kick and then I think that will by my lot

Marcus Gayle

"I said at the start of the season I wanted to be the best defender there and that is how it turned out.

"After that I thought I would finish off my career at centre back, playing as many games as possible."

But when Gayle joined Brentford for a second spell in March 2005 he was used primarily as a striker - and the hat-trick dream was back on.

"To get a hat-trick was of my remaining ambitions," said the Hammersmith-born player.

"I still want to score an overhead kick and then I think that will by my lot. I will be attempting it if the back will hold out. It nearly happened in pre-season but the keeper made a good save."

And Gayle is hopeful his lucky white boots - with a big split down the side - will last long enough to see him fulfil his overhead ambition.

"The crazy thing is I was supposed to throw those boots away weeks ago - then I scored a double against Tamworth."

Gayle opted against wearing them against York and Woking - failing to score in both games.

He bought some new boots and turned up for Saturday's game with two pairs in his bag. As he changed for the game he opted to wear the white ones.

"It came up trumps for me," said Gayle, who speaks in a measured tone and has a nice line in self-deprecating humour.

"I am going to wear them on Saturday - and when they eventually fall apart I'll clean them up, have them put in a glass box and give them to the club."

But Gayle did not bother to claim Saturday's match ball.

"I don't want a football," he mused.

"Footballs go missing in my house - it will probably end up in someone's garden."



SEE ALSO
Aldershot 4-2 Kidderminster
14 Oct 06 |  Non League


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