SBiTC’s ‘Walking Football’ Takes A Short Summer Fortnight Break

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SBiTC Walking Football A5 1pp (print)Walking Football BedduthSBiTC’s ‘Walking Football’ takes a short Summer holiday break this coming week and next. So for the rest of July the Walking Football gang will not meet for either its regular Tuesday slot at the Bedworth Oval or its regular Thursday slot in Coventry at St.Finbarr’s Sport & Social Club. Bedworth is not running ‘Walking Football’ on the 19th & 26th and St.Finbarr’s takes a break on the 21st and 27th.

Don’t worry, its only a short interlude! By the start of the proper football season ‘Walking Football’ will be up and running again and the first new sessions will begin in the first week in August, Tuesday 2nd at Bedworth FC and Thursday 4th in Coventry at St.Finbarr’s Sport & Social Club  303 Holbrooks Lane, Coventry CV6 4DG.

The sessions are designed to offer gentle but competitive exercise for the over 50s, and start at 10.30am running through to around noon costing £3 (including hot and cold refreshments).

So, if you want to improve yor fitness in the company of a friendly crowd just turn up with boots/trainers to one of the sessions!  CCFPA full members including the likes of Bill Tedds, Dietmar Bruck, Ken Brown, Ian Goodwin, Dave Bennett, committee members Dean Nelson and Frank Pritchard and a number of Associate Members can often be found amongst the participants and supporters at the sessions (at least 30 regularly turn up usually including a few newbies!), so why not join the regulars at either session (or both) when they start up again next month?

Walking 21-1-16e

Defenders await a Walking Football Tackle

Walking 21-1-16f

A Cold Morning but Hot Football at St Finbarrs

Both sets of friendly events are run by CCFC’s Sky Blues In The Community run by former Sky Blue defender (and CCFPA member) Dave Busst and have always been supported by the Coventry City Diamond Club, Coventry City Former Players Association  and Covsupport News Service and their members.

For more information about the sessions at both sites you can contact Sky Blues in the Community’s Health Manager, Hiedi Sloan (telephone: 02476 786 314 Text: 07813 455 531 or by email: hiedi.sloan@ccfc.co.uk). SBiTC can also be contacted at sbitc@ccfc.co.uk

Chairman Jim’s Appreciation of the Late John O’Rourke Now Uploaded

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CCFC Official Club Historian and CCFPA Chairman Jim Brown has now penned a full obituary/ appreciation of the life and career of former Sky Blue forward John O’Rourke who sadly passed away on the 7th July 2016 at the age of 71.

To read the appreciation please click on the ‘Players’ tab above and then select the ‘Gone But Not Forgotten’ option from the drop down list.

We understand that John’s funeral will be a private family affair on Wednesday 20th July. However the following wake at Captain’s Club in Christchurch from 4-6pm will celebrate John’s life. The Association hopes to be represented.

All at CCFPA send John’s family and friends our sincere condolences.

Big McK Gets A Shot At The British Super-Middleweight Title

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Leon McKenzie Fight 13-12-2014CCFPA member and former Coventry City striker Leon McKenzie who has developed a second succesful professional career in boxing after retiring from soccer is listed to fight for the British super-middleweight championship later in the year.

Leon, whose goes under the nickname ‘Big McK’ in the ring has earned his shot since he remains unbeaten in nine fights since making the transformation from footballer to professional boxer three years ago. Big McK will be facing Jahmaine Smyle on November 12th 2016 at Leon’s ‘home’ venue at York Hall in London.

Leon in the Sky Blue

Leon in the Sky Blue

Leon can be viewed talking about his two professions as well as his fight with personal mental and physical challenges (including injuries, depression and thoughts of suicide) which he also covered in his book, ‘My Fight With Life’. CCFPA member Leon who joined the Sky Blues early in their Ricoh tenancy (2006-09) after spells at Crystal Palace, Peterborough United and Norwich City scored 12 goals in his 62 league appearances for the Sky Blues.

He moved on to Charlton Athletic and saw out his professional football career with spells at Northampton Town, Kettering Town and Corby Town before exchanging his soccer boots for boxing gloves in 2013. To see these two videos, please click on either https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEoeFHOWrZE or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dqZ3h1a-Gnc

Leon obviously has striking in his blood! Apart from goalscoring in the soccer world his father Clinton is a former British and European light-welterweight champion, while uncle Duke was crowned world champion at three different weight levels during his career. McKenzie is apparently looking for sponsorship for his new crack at the title and further details can be obtained by emailing leon@lmsport.co.uk

Who Is CCFPA’s newest Member? Well, Welcome ‘Athers’!

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Pet in the Sky Blue

Peter in the Sky Blue

Well, now we are able to announce the signing of our latest Association member – its former Sky Blues defender from the nineties, Peter Atherton!

Our intrepid CCFPA sleuth, committee man Frank Pritchard had re-established contact with Peter some months ago and this week finally found a window where both of their schedules coincided. Frank travelled north to Peter’s current base and arranged a rendezvous in the unlikely setting of Starbucks in Wigan.  Frank takes up the story……

PA tie 2

Frank (left) signs up Athers

“Great catch-up with an old friend who I hadn’t seen for many years but he made it seem like only yesterday. His playing career spanned 20 years and started in 1986 at Wigan Athletic as a YTS becoming a professional with them in February 1988. ‘Athers’ made 177 first team appearances (1 goal) for the ‘Latics before joining the Sky Blues in summer 1991 for £329,000. Peter is now back in Wigan where he now coaches the U 18’s (after a spell in management at Halifax Town in 2007)

Withe the City he was capped for England at U21 level and before leaving for Sheffield Wednesday in June 1994 for £800k had made 114 league and 6 cup appearances without finding the net! During this time he formed arguably one of the best defensive partnerships of recent years with Phil Babb. He vividly remembers his debut at QPR a 1-1 draw with Roy Wegerle notching the equaliser after nudging ‘Athers’ in the back; Wegerle of course later joined the Sky Blues. His most precious memory though was the emphatic 5-1 thumping of Liverpool at Highfield Road! He eventually moved onto Sheffield Wednesday and we reflected on the strange coincidence of defenders the Sky Blues have signed from the Wednesday including our member Richard Wood and also Reda Johnson.

the signing

the signing

Spells at Bradford City, Birmingham City and Halifax Town followed and his full career spanned 318 games, 9 goals and included 43 yellow cards and 1 red before he hung up his boots in 2006 following a fourth knee operation. It’s a big weekend for him and his current club Wigan who take on Liverpool on Saturday & Manchester United on Sunday in pre-season friendlies. Great to catch up with Peter and reflect on some memorable Coventry City times.

Welcome aboard ‘Athers’!”

All at CCFPA share Frank’s welcome and we look forward to entertaining ‘Athers’ at one of our events before too long and perhaps, should his Wigan duties allow, he might be able to be our guest at the Ricoh to see the latest crop of Sky Blues!