Newcastle Benfield have so far raised £2,000 for the cancer ward at the Freeman Hospital – where Lions player Kieran Wrightson was treated for 12 weeks.

Entry for Wednesday’s game against Sunderland RCA was free so spectators could make voluntary donations to the Ward 34 appeal.

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez also sent a signed letter and photo along with a signed United shirt as part of a fund-raising raffle.

Club press officer Allan Young said:

“As with games like this thanks must go out to many people and in particular to our chairman Jimmy Rowe for his kindness in allowing free entry to the ground. Thanks must also go to Eric & Frankie who manned the turnstile with their buckets collecting the contributions from the spectators.

“Steve Boyle and his 11 year-old son Callum also did heroic work in selling raffle tickets, walking around the ground despite the pouring rain.

“The Newcastle manager also took time out of his busy schedule to call Kieran to have a chat.

“Benfield committee men Ian Cusack, Dave Robson and Gary Thompson between them paid for all the officials fees of which Dean Hulme, the referee, donated his match fee to the ward.  Finally, there was a fantastic contribution of £150 from John Best of Borderline Taxis.

“A big thank you to all the people who turned up to watch the match in the most difficult playing conditions and the players for putting on a grand display winning 6-0.

“Many of Kieran’s team mates from his previous club North Shields came along in support of Kieran, showing how well he was respected in the Northern League family.”


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