It was the starting point for many a talented footballer.
The local football leagues in the Hartlepool area saw players battle away bravely on behalf of their team.
Whether it was muddy surfaces or bone hard pitches, it didn’t matter, nor that it was often on a Sunday morning.
We want your memories of the teams you played for and the highlights of your days as a keen winger, centre back, goalkeeper or demon striker.
We’ve turned the clock back to 2004 to look at some of the teams and the players who made the Hartlepool Mail local league headlines.
How about the Fosters Over 40s League, where the teams included Owton Manor, Touchdown, Hartlepool Catholic Club, Horden Comrades and Wynyard Old Boys.
Others included Dagmar FC, Hartlepool Warrior, and Blackhall Hardwick.
We took a look at one particular week in the season when Kenny Donkin, and John Tumilty were among the players to shine in a game between Owton Manor and Steels SC. It was Manor who came out on top 3-2 in a match against the previous season’s champions.
What a game it was in division three where Wynyard Old Boys trounced Marsden Veterans 7-0 with four goals from Peter Garbutt, two from Paul Davison and one from Terry Bean.
In the Mike Gough Sports Sunday League that year, table toppers The Spot enjoyed a great 7-1 win over Workingmen’s Club with highlights including a 20-yard lob from Gareth Wallace, and a 25-yard belter from Phil Thompson.
Another great match involved Hartlepool Rossmere and Cash Trading, which finished 6-3 to Rossmere.
Rossy opened the scoring through Stephen Cooper and Aaron Hall doubled the lead with a wonderful diving header.
The game went back into the balance with two Cash Trading goals and then the game became a seesaw match before Rossy sealed the points with goals from Aaron Hall, Barry Kennedy and Alan Carter.
An even better result went the way of Atletico Ten Feet Tall who beat Moorcock 12-2 while Charter Bar sealed a 6-2 away win at Engineers.
Were you a part of it all and what do you remember of those local league matches?
In the Hartlepool Layers League, Camerons won 3-1 in a League Cup quarter-final against Pennicks, while HSC hammered Owton Lodge 9-1 in the same competition where the stars included Tommy Hudson, Michael Archer and Michael Huntley.
Who remembers Archer’s thunderous 35-yard volley?
Blacksmiths were 10-3 winners against the New Vue and other teams around at the time included Bollingers, Melbourne, Brus Arms and Lynnfield.
Give us all your memories of local league football and remind us of your highlights.
Did you score the winner in a cup final or save a vital penalty. Or perhaps you just want to reflect on the great camaraderie.
If you can help, email firstname.lastname@example.org