Sidbury/All Stars football match scores �7,000 for cancer charity

THE CLAY family couldn t have asked for better support at Sunday s fundraising football match between Sidbury United and Exeter City All Stars.

THE CLAY family couldn't have asked for better support at Sunday's fundraising football match between Sidbury United and Exeter City All Stars.

"It was a brilliant day. About 1,200 people came and we made around �7,000, more than we expected," said Tim Clay, who organised the event in memory of his wife Ann with sons Danny and Ben, who captained the sides.

"It was a good competitive match and the Exeter team won 3-2. The Sidbury team played really well, all the cheers were for Sidbury.

"Danny scored the winning penalty and Ben - Sidbury captain - crossed a corner ball in and they scored from that," said Tim.

Money raised will go to Breast Cancer Care. Ann died last September from breast cancer and many family members travelled from Nottinghamshire for the match.

Among them was one of her sisters, Paula Walton, and brother David.

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Paula said: "I knew there would be a lot of people there but not as big as it was. David was on one of the gates and couldn't believe how friendly everyone was, and generous too, some putting �10 in the bucket for the �3 programme."

Tim originally told Breast Cancer Care he estimated raising �500 for the charity, then thought he might reach four figures, but was overwhelmed by locals' generosity.

"I had lots of donations, with people coming up and giving me �20," he said.

"I had written to residents in Byes Lane - near the sports ground - to warn them this was happening and one man laid on free tea and coffee for people and took donations for us."

So many businesses supported the match programme with adverts that Tim had to increase its pagination to get them in.

Grecian Dean Moxey, a friend of Danny's as they went through the ranks together, had hoped to play if City had won Saturday's match, but it drew.

However, he had an important role, pulling out winning tickets for the prize draw.

"The Exeter players were saying it was one of the best Legends matches because of the atmosphere and attendance and would like to do it again," said Tim.

As well as the match, hosted by Sidbury United with the help of manager Mel Coombs and wife Dawn, there other activities on offer, including a barbeque, bouncing castle, refreshments and Audi stand.

During half-time kids enjoyed a penalty shootout against Grecian the Lion, and a team from St John Ambulance was on hand in case of injuries.

*See our website for a video clip of the match and this week's Sidmouth Herald for our picture spread.