Hibs record breaker Rory delivers stirring message after debut
Whittaker wants this to be just the start of his Hibs story
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Record breaking Hibs kid Rory Whittaker hopes his promotion from ball boy to first team debutant acts as an inspiration to other academy prospects.
And the right back, who became the club’s youngest ever “senior” player when he was thrown on for the last 20 minutes of Saturday’s 2-0 home win over St Johnstone, is determined to become more than just a historical footnote – by pursuing even greater highs in Hibee colours.
Whittaker, who was still chasing balls on the sidelines at Easter Road just weeks ago, was plucked from the under-18s squad by new gaffer Nick Montgomery after the 16-year-old impressed coaches in a game against Rangers.
The former Spartans youngster, who has been in the Hibs academy system since age 10, admitted it had been a huge honour to play with footballers he grew up watching from the stands.
And he said: “I hope that I’ve inspired other younger players. I saw a few of the ball boys I recognised from the younger academy. It’s good to see their faces. They look up to me. So obviously being a ball boy and then making your debut, it’s pretty mad. But I’ve enjoyed any moment.
“It was brilliant, a great experience to be the youngest player to play for the club. That’s a great achievement for me and hopefully I’ve inspired other young players coming through the academy.
“It was a great day - but I’m hungry to push forward, to get more chances. It’s only the start. I’ve got to keep going. I’ve supported this club my whole life - so I’ve got to keep chasing chances with the first team.”