A superb goalkeeping display by Rory Brown ensured Institute picked up a hard-fought point against in-form Glentoran, on Saturday.
Brown made a host of top drawer saves, denying Gavin Peers and Hrvoje Plum before revealing he’d enjoyed his “busy day” at Brandywell and was full of praise for his team-mates who gave everything against the Glens.
“In the first half we played well and created chances but we conceded and I thought I could have done better with the goal. However we kept going forward and even going in 1-1 at half-time, I thought we would fly into the second half but fair play to the Glens,” he explained.
“They came out in the second half and put it up to us but, again, we all gave our all and thankfully got a point.
“I don’t mind having to work hard as long as the ball doesn’t go into the ‘onion bag. I don’t care how busy I am.
“I thought Conor Tourish was unbelievable again and I was happy that we managed to keep a clean-sheet in the second half.”
The former Wolves starlet, who endured a heart stopping moment in the recent game at Crusaders when he collided with the post before the ball was scrambled cleared, was relieved not to concede a goal from a similar incident against the Glens on Saturday.
Brown also praised new boss, Sean Connor, who, after taking a few weeks to settle in, has started to get a balanced team which is reaping rewards.
“It was the same last week. I got away with it against the Crues and fair play to Tourish, he was there again today and managed to get in front of (Robbie) McDaid’s follow-up strike,” he added.
“When Sean came in he obviously didn’t know much about the lads and was working hard to try and get his back four or five. To be fair him, he looks like he has a settled back four in front of me and I’ll be looking to keep pushing on now.”
The ex-Maiden City Soccer and Culmore net-minder, who made a host of top draw saves at the weekend, denying ex-Derry City centre-back Gavin Peers and talented midfielder, Hrvoje Plum, is following in his father, Dermot’s, footsteps as a ’Stute number one and enjoying being back playing football after a tough few years.
Brown said he felt it was best to leave league leaders, Coleraine, to secure first team football on a regular basis.
“For about a season I wasn’t playing at all and I’m just happy to be back playing again,” he added, “It took me a while to get going but I’m loving playing again every week and have to keep going forward with the lads.
“I was at the Crues for a year but before that I was over in England for three years. I was out through injury and things didn’t go well there, so I came back to Coleraine and signed for them last year but it didn’t really work out, as I just wanted to play more regularly.
“I need to get back into the groove in terms of playing and I’m enjoying it. Like any player, I just want to play games. There’s no point sitting about waiting for something to happen, you have to go and make it happen yourself.”