The Gills first team take on the Johnstone's Paint Pot Challenge

Gillingham have become the latest club to put their skills to the test by taking on the Johnstone’s Paint Pot Challenge.

The Gills, who are in the Southern Area Finals of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy, took on the unique test of accuracy at their training ground.

Ten players from the squad attempted to chip the ball from the angle of the 18-yard box into a giant inflatable paint pot on the middle of the six yard line.

The players and staff were joined on the challenge by 50-year-old Gary Norman, a supporter who won the ‘11th player’ competition.

Ten points are awarded for a successful chip-in, with one point accumulated each time the paint pot is struck.

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Brennan Dickenson, Max Ehmer and Luke Norris scored a point each by hitting the inflatable, while competition winner Gary also added a point to his team’s total. But it was Josh Hare who earned the praise of coach Andy Hessenthaler by managing a perfect chip in, giving Gillingham a total of 14 points.
Barnsley still lead this season’s competition with an impressive 26 points.

Hessenthaler, who is part of the management team at Gillingham following Peter Taylor’s departure over Christmas, said: “We were delighted to take part in the Johnstone’s Paint Pot Challenge. It’s a tough challenge but a very fun one and the players who took part enjoyed it.

“I’m really pleased for Josh. He strikes the ball really well so it was no surprise to see it drop in.”

Gary, who has been a Gillingham season ticket holder for 20 years and used to play for Gravesend & Northfleet FC in his youth, said he was pleased to take part.

He said: “I really enjoyed taking part in the Johnstone’s Paint Pot Challenge. Not many people get the opportunity to mingle with the players at training, so that was a fantastic experience.

“It was great to have a photo with a couple of the players, and with Andy.”

Ben Wilde, brand and sponsorship manager for Johnstone’s Paint, said: “As Area Finalists, it was great to have Gillingham involved in this season’s Paint Pot Challenge.

“There were some really good efforts, and of course Josh Hare joins the elite list of those players who have scored maximum points.

“We look forward to taking our giant paint pot to more training grounds around the country before the Wembley final.”

Gillingham will have to come from two goals behind if they are to reach Wembley after falling to a 4-2 defeat at home to Bristol City in the first leg of their Area Final.

For all the latest information regarding the Johnstone’s Paint Pot Challenge, please visit
The nearest Johnstone’s Decorating Centre to Gillingham’s Priestfield Stadium can be found at Unit 10, Meridian Park, Neptune Close, Medway, Rochester.