Great ef­fort by 24-hour foot­ballers

Stu­dents and col­lege staff raise £3,200 for car­diac char­ity in games

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Kelly Good­win ed­i­to­ri­aluxbridge@trin­i­tysouth.co.uk

UXBRIDGE Col­lege stu­dents and staff played foot­ball non-stop for 24 hours, rais­ing a mas­sive £3,200 for Car­diac Risk in the Young (CRY).

Play­ers took part in a se­ries of five-a-side matches start­ing at 11am and con­tin­u­ing all day and through­out the night – with some on the pitch for 10-12 hours.

Around 40 sports stu­dents took turns play­ing across the whole 24 hours on April 18 and 19, with oth­ers tak­ing part in one-off matches.

The event was co­or­di­nated by sports lec­turer Richard John­son, whose own ex­pe­ri­ences of car­diac prob­lems in­spired the choice of char­ity.

Richard said: “This was harder than any of us ex­pected and a mas­sive team ef­fort. The word that de­fined the whole event is char­ac­ter – the stu­dents showed in­cred­i­ble char­ac­ter and ded­i­ca­tion, and de­spite be­ing fa­tigued to the max most of them kept go­ing through the whole 24-hours.

“There was blood, sweat and tears be­hind the scenes too when things got tough, but they en­cour­aged each other to keep go­ing.

“The amount of money they raised is fan­tas­tic too – one stu­dent, Matt Seven, raised more than £600 by him­self. Ev­ery­one did amaz­ingly.”

Richard spent the first two months of his life in hos­pi­tal af­ter be­ing born with a hole in the heart and re­lated is­sues, and as he grew up was warned by doc­tors to avoid stren­u­ous ex­er­cise but has been in­volved in cross-coun­try run­ning and other sports since he was a teenager and con­tin­ues to be in good health.

Stand­out in­cluded ‘man play­ers of the match’ Jack Pitcher, 20, who was top goal scorer and clocked up 12 hours of play.

Also hon­oured for their per­for­mances were Dy­lan Polling­ton and Joe Hol­land, both 18 who each re­ceived a win­ner’s tro­phy for their team, and as well as play­ing for hours on end, they helped or­gan­ised the event and mo­ti­vated oth­ers.

The lo­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tive for CRY, Jeff Markham from Ruis­lip, spoke to stu­dents about how he came to be in­volved in the char­ity. Jeff ’s son died sud­denly in 2001 at the age of just 21 from un­di­ag­nosed heart prob­lems and he and his fam­ily were sup­ported by CRY.

Jeff said: “It was lovely to be in­volved and quite emo­tional for me to be part of be­cause of the per­sonal mean­ing.

“It is amaz­ing ef­fort done with real en­thu­si­asm and com­mit­ment.

“Congratulations to ev­ery­one, for their in­cred­i­ble per­for­mances and for the money raised for CRY.”

Each par­tic­i­pant had to raise or do­nate money, and a raf­fle was also held with prizes in­cluded club shirts signed by the Ar­se­nal Ladies FC play­ers, and CRY pa­tron and for­mer Chelsea and Manch­ester United player Ray Wilkins.

There were also other fundrais­ing events in­clud­ing a keepy-up com­pe­ti­tion and guess the foot­ball badge chal­lenge.

The event was also sup­ported by the col­lege’s cater­ers Chartwell, who pro­vided sand­wiches, with Prontaprint Uxbridge spon­sor­ing T-shirts for the event.

CRY works to re­duce the fre­quency of young sud­den car­diac death (known as YSCD), sup­port­ing young peo­ple di­ag­nosed with po­ten­tially lifethreat­en­ing car­diac con­di­tions, pro­mot­ing and de­vel­op­ing heart screen­ing pro­grammes and fund­ing med­i­cal re­search.

The char­ity pro­vides sup­port be­reaved fam­i­lies.

There was blood, sweat and trears be­hind the scenes when things got tough, but the y en­cour­aged each other to keep go­ing”

also for

n A GAME OF SEV­ERAL HALVES: Uxbridge Col­lege stu­dents and teach­ers played non-stop foot­ball for 24 hours to raise money for the char­ity Car­diac Risk in the Young (CRY)

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