BEN Strevens has seen off stiff competition to be named new manager of Vanarama National League outfit Eastleigh.

The Spitfires received more than 70 applications for the post when Andy Hessenthaler left last month to take over at Dover Athletic.

Strevens, his assistant, took over the reins on an interim basis and, after a shaky start, three superb performances in the space of eight days against Halifax, Leyton Orient and Salford City have tipped the scales in his favour.

He becomes Eastleigh's sixth manager in the last two-and-a-half seasons, following in the footsteps of Chris Todd, Ronnie Moore, Martin Allen, Richard Hill and Hessenthaler.

Born in Edgware, north London, 38-year-old Strevens first joined Eastleigh as a player in May 2013 following the end of his second spell with Dagenham & Redbridge.

The ex-Barnet, Brentford, Wycombe Wanderers and Brentford forward/midfielder played an integral part in delivering the Conference South title to the Silverlake in his first season as a Spitfire.

He made his first move into management as player/assistant to Todd during the latter stages of 2015/16 and, following Todd’s departure, stepped in as caretaker for one game.

After making 84 appearance in three seasons with the Stoneham Lane club, Strevens left Eastleigh by mutual agreement to work with Hill at Whitehawk and had a brief time as joint manager of the Sussex club after Hill had landed a scouting job with Aston Villa.

But his love of Eastleigh pulled him back as a player in December 2016 – a move that reunited him with his former Barnet and Gillingham boss Allen.

He got back involved on the coaching side when Hill returned to the club and has been in and around the coaching/managerial team ever since.