Having already been to Coventry for trails in 2020 for the Scotland squad (and being selected), two lads from Arbroath Walking Football: Gordon ‘Gogs’ Smith and Dave ‘Wadds’ Waddell, traveled down to Nottingham to participate in the Samantha Birtles Memorial Cup. This event was a walking football tournament organised by Nottingham Forest legend Garry Birtles in memory of his wife, who he lost to pancreatic cancer.
Ten teams were involved in the tournament, and the lads were in some illustrious company as some current and ex England national walking football players were involved.
The lads were surprised when their team (the Scottish Exiles) was piped onto the pitch. A very proud moment that they both agreed made the hairs on the back of their neck stand up.
The Exiles made it through the group stages, winning two and losing 1-0 to Nottingham Forest. Gogs Scored a cracking debut goal against Boston United, an unstoppable howitzer from 15 yards, and Wadds was named man of the match against Nottingham forest.
In the semi-final, the Scottish Exiles came out 1-0 victors in a very close match against Sleaford Town.
The Exiles then faced the North East England Select team in the final. In what was always going to be a very close match, the game finished 0-0. The game went to sudden death penalties, Gogs scored, and Wadds saved the last penalty kick to ensure the cup went to the Scottish Exiles. Wadds was also named Man of the match for the final.
The lads would like to express their gratitude to – Steve Morgon for organising the event. Garry Birtles, for being a great host and for organising this event. Arbroath FC Community Trust for their support, particularly Kevin Middleton for supplying the tops.
Everyone at AWF would like to congratulate the lads; well done.