Featuring as a prominent member of Broadmeadow Magic’s former dominance, Ben Higgins has now made the move to his junior club Adamstown Rosebud but has continued his strength, organisation and leadership in the centre of defence. Having played in the league for over a decade, Ben has built himself a great resume boasting three premierships, and four championships to his name and he’s now hoping to build some success at his new club amongst a very young squad. Ben and correspondent Quentin chatted this week, finding out details about his career and the highlights he’s experienced.
Where and when did you start your junior career and how did you progress into senior football?
I started Playing when I was 5 years old for Kotara South Tigers. From there, I was picked for Newcastle-Port Stephens at Under 11s and also made the move to Adamstown Rosebud to play alongside other players in the NPS side. We were able to play for NPS and Rosebud for 11s and 12s and then the new format started for the associations where I played 13-16s for Newcastle Port Stephens. After this, Broadmeadow Magic approached me to sign for their youth team and that is where I stayed for 13 consecutive seasons before changing back to Adamstown Rosebud again this season.
What do you like to do in your spare time when you’re not playing soccer/football?
I enjoy playing golf when I can. It’s very hard during the season but I try to play most weeks in the off-season. Other than that, spending good time with my girlfriend Jodie, and catching up with friends.
What do you do for work? Are you currently studying? Or have you completed your studies, if so, in what field?
My family owns a business called Macquarie Garage Doors based in Gateshead which I moved in straight from school and now manage.
You made the move over to Adamstown this season from Magic, what was the reason behind the change?
The reason = Shane Cansdell Sheriff. He came to me with an offer to join him and the way he spoke filled me with great confidence. I knew instantly I wanted to play for him. It is a fresh start and a chance to be a leader of some promising youth players coming through at Adamstown.
There’s a lot of youth coming through the Adamstown ranks at the moment, is trying to help develop them into better footballers a factor you’ve undertaken?
Being handed the captaincy by Shane was a big vote in confidence towards me especially since I had just joined the club and it gives me extra responsibility in showing these young players as best as I can what I have learnt in my career. I enjoy trying to drill in what it takes to be successful to the highest possible degree.
You’ve now become a veteran of the league, what would you say is your highest achievement?
My highest achievement would be winning Premierships and Championships in this league. Most people in their careers don’t ever get a chance to play in a Grand Final so I’m thankful to have played in five Grand Finals and been a winner in four of them. 2008 was my first, 2011 was next but I missed most of that year with injury although it was great feeling to come back the next season and win in 2012 and 2013.
What player has been one of your favourite players to play with and you have admiration for? Why?
I have been lucky enough to play with some great players in my time at Broadmeadow. The players that have been there to create the spine, culture and success that we had over that time, and especially the three Championship wins between 2011-2013, are all my favourites to have played with. I can’t name one to favour, but one player I do have great admiration for is Peter Haynes. He was our captain for many years and not only did he lead by example on the pitch with his talent and ability to produce important goals, he was a great role model off the field for us to follow as well. He was always approachable and always there for his team mates.
Which player is the hardest to play against? And why?
Due to many years of producing it would have to be Jon Majurovski. He’s a very smart player and is always in the right place at the right time to score goals. It’s rare to get the ball off him when he is in possession and just when you think you have him… he will nutmeg you. He’s a top drawer player!
Most memorable moment(s) of your career so far?
Winning three Championships in a row!
Most influential person in your career?
A special friend of mine named David Brady, has always been there for me to give straight forward feedback on what I’ve done well but also not so well at times. This was always good and has definitely been a big influence on the player I am today. He gave me a lot of time in training for many years when I was younger and that is highly valued to me.
What’s your plans for the future of your career? Where are you hoping to progress?
The challenge for my future going forward is to continue to work hard and continue to push the young lads at the club to drive towards the top four next year. It would be a sweet feeling to break into that top four and with this years’ experience under our belts, Adamstown will be a stronger opponent next season.