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02/03: Review:
"There's always next year"
By Martin Patching
First published in the Hemel Hempstead Gazette, 29/05/03

As far as Bank Holiday weekends go, one of the best, especially if you happen to be a Wolves supporter and I know there are many out there in Dacorum. The champaign corks were popping in Berkhamsted as finally, Sir Jack Hayward's club made the promised land. I was a member of the team which won the old Division 2 championship way back in 1976/77. It meant a lot in those days, even more now and following several years of knocking on the Premiership door, the Wolves roar in to the top flight at last. I take my gold and black bobble hat off to all involved at Molineux and with the stadium and finances in place I am sure David Jones will consolidate a place for the Midland giants in The Premiership League. "High Ho Silver Lining" and" The Liquidator" are still on my turntable and good luck for next season.

The "Watford Testimonial Day" held at Vicarage Road was a resounding success with over 5,000 fans enjoying a memorable afternoon's entertainment. Vinnie Jones and Bradley Walsh were the star entertainers in the celebrity game. The games had something for everyone - a goal scored by the ref, a streaker, Helen Chamberlain mesmerising the goalkeeper and the Rookery End crowd by taking her top off to reveal...a Hornets shirt!

For me the highlight was John Barnes, who at 40 remains a wonderful sight dribbling with the ball. It was John who placed an inch perfect pass to put me 10 yards out with only the goalkeeper to beat. Of course, it went wide and although confident I would finish off the next chance, the final whistle blew. Still, there's always next year and it is hoped the fixture will become part of the football calender at The Vic.

I'm taking a break until the players return for a pre-season tour of Finland. Have a great summer.

Reproduced courtesy of Gazette Newspapers