Hicks (shown right), who joined Casuals in 2010 took on the captaincy under departing boss Matt Howard and played a pivotal part in Casuals’ defence in the past few seasons. His performances didn’t go unnoticed and ex-Kingstonian Manager, Alan Dowson who is now at Hampton has taken the opportunity to add Hicks to his summer signings. Hicks previously played under Dowson at K’s before joining Corinth.
Dowson went on record to say of the signing of Hicks, saying, "Joe is now more than ready to make the step up to the Ryman Premier League and he will be a very important part of the squad."
Maz Bettache (pictured left) impressed in his time at Corinthian-Casuals and his skills were picked up by many who saw him, including Manchester United’s South American scout and Corinthians’ Futstal coaches in Sao Paulo.
But it was his performance against Hendon in the London Senior Cup that first attracted the Ryman Premier runners-up to the ex-Fulham trainee.
Both will be sadly missed by Casuals and tributes to Hicks and Bettache have been made on both sides of the pond. Ex-England Cricket Captain and Casuals’ member Alec Stewart took to Twitter to say “They will be missed but they have to try and further their careers.” Club Secretary Hanna Newton also added “I’m going to miss Joe & Maz at Corinthian-Casuals but wish them all the very best, they have both been an absolute pleasure to work with.”
Hicks and Bettache who played in front of 30,000 fans in Brazil in January 2015 also gathered tributes from Sao Paulo including “congratulations !they deserve it! Two great players! We will miss them actually!”
Club spokesman Stuart Tree said “On behalf of all at Corinthian-Casuals, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Joe and Maz for everything they achieved here. We wish both of them the very best for the future.
“They were both fantastic for us on the pitch and real ambassadors to the club off it. It will be a shame not to have them and their supportive families at King George’s Arena. Casuals will be a poorer place for that.
“We always say to players that this is a club where those looking to further their careers can forge experience of playing in such a competitive league. I’m sure their time with us has made them more complete footballers and will surely excel at their new clubs.
“But we have exciting times ahead at Casuals; with James Bracken taking charge, the signs are already very positive and we’re aiming for an even better season than the one just gone. There’s some very positive vibes coming out of King George’s Arena at the moment.”