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Stratford beat Shottery in memorial match for club stalwart Alan Cook



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THERE was not a dry eye at Pearcecroft on Saturday when the bagpipes rang out for the inaugural presentation of the Alan Cook Man of the Match Cup.

Judith Layhe-Cook pictured with Luke Greenall, the inaugural winner of the Alan Cook Man of the Match Cup. Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9136
Judith Layhe-Cook pictured with Luke Greenall, the inaugural winner of the Alan Cook Man of the Match Cup. Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9136

Players current and old as well as families and children packed the Loxley Road ground to see Stratford 2nds take on Shottery in a match played in memory of club stalwart Alan Cook, who died following a short battle with cancer last year.

Glasses were raised, memories were remembered and a fantastic game of rugby followed, with Stratford getting the better of their local rivals 51-0.

Jo Cook, Callum Cook and Judith Layhe-Cook with Richard Jasper, of the International Highlanders, and the Stratford and Shottery squads. Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9135
Jo Cook, Callum Cook and Judith Layhe-Cook with Richard Jasper, of the International Highlanders, and the Stratford and Shottery squads. Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9135

However, the result did not matter, as the day was about celebrating a much-loved club stalwart.

The first recipient of the Alan Cook Man of the Match Cup was Luke Greenall and as the presentation was made, Richard Jasper, of the International Highlanders, played Flower of Scotland on the bagpipes, an emotional moment where there was not a dry eye to be seen.

Richard Jasper of the International Highlanders. Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9123
Richard Jasper of the International Highlanders. Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9123

The weekend’s heavy rain certainly did not dampen the spirits of everyone at Pearcecroft and Alan’s widow Judith Layhe-Cook was delighted with how the whole afternoon went.

“It was everything Alan would have wanted,” she told the Herald.

Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9127
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9127

“The match was played with joy and sportsmanship, and both teams did themselves proud.

"I had planned for the bagpipes to be a surprise and there was not a dry eye when Richard played Flower of Scotland.”

She added: “There was more people there than I anticipated and it made for a great atmosphere.”

Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9119
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9119
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9117
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9117
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9116
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9116
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9112
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9112
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9110
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9110
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9106
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9106
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9100
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9100
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9066
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9066
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9089
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9089
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9087
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9087
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9082
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9082
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9077
Photo: Mark Williamson R50/10/21/9077

All photos can be purchased from https://stratfordherald.zenfolio.com.



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