Lewis-Potter: It Was Such A Proud Moment
It will go down in the history books as a narrow FA Cup exit but Keane Lewis-Potter will never forget last weekend's Third Round tie against Millwall.
The 17-year-old Academy product was handed his senior debut - in sulphur spring and white - when coming on as an 81st-minute substitute for Nouha Dicko at The Den and despite the end result in South London, the youngster was quick to admit the occasion was the realisation of a dream.
Describing the moment that he took to the pitch to make his senior debut for the Tigers, he said: "It was such a proud moment for me and my family. There were a lot of things going through my head at the time, although I thought I would be more nervous than I actually was. I just kept control of all my emotions, remained focused and went onto the pitch. I knew it was going to be difficult coming against senior professionals in terms of my physical ability and age but it's just the next step of my development.
"I trained down at Cottingham on the Friday before the game, but I didn't think at that point that I would be involved in the squad. It was only on the day of the game that I found out I was actually going to be on the bench. The FA Cup is a great competition, and it's got a great history for young lads stepping up to make their debuts, and it was an honour to be the next one to do so.
"Making my debut for my hometown club has been my dream since I was a little kid and that dream has now become reality. It's such a great feeling, although it's difficult to sum up just how much it meant to me. Looking back on it, I'm lost for words really. I've been here since I was young and coming through the Academy, it was just great to step up and play for the first-team."
It’s been some journey for Lewis-Potter - who first joined the Club's youth set-up at the age of 13. After being fast-tracked into the Tigers' Under-18s and Under-23s in the past couple of seasons, the Hull-born youngster signed a first professional contract with the Club in February last year before seeing his continued progress at Development Squad level rewarded with his first-team bow.
"I've worked my socks off over the last couple of years and it's nice to see a reward for all of that hard work," he added. "The gaffer has been brilliant with me, integrating me into training and then putting me in the squad. I didn't think my debut would come so early in my career with me only being 17, but I've done it now. As I say, it's a brilliant feeling but my focus now is on getting more.
"It was great to get a taste but it's left me wanting more and I'll give everything I've got to make that happen. It's just a case of hard work, hard work and more hard work. If I continue to do that, hopefully more rewards will come.
"I signed my first professional contract with the club last year and that was another proud moment. That comes into effect for next season but I don't want to rest on my laurels - I want another contract and another contract after that. I want to keep pushing for more and the only way to achieve that is by continuing to work hard and continuing to develop and that's exactly what I'll look to do."