Roger’s Big Game

Monday, 5 May 2003, 0:00
2 mins read

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It was nearing the end of 2000 when Keith Haynes and I sat in Roger’s house discussing first off his biography and then his testimonial year. We were both honoured when Roger asked us to help him with the year and the work started. Believe it or not, the game was first on the agenda and contact was made then with Chelsea.
Numerous phone calls have passed since that first one and it was with delight that just over a month ago we were given the nod that we would see a Chelsea XI at the Vetch tomorrow night. With former start and current Wales manager Mark Hughes in the line up together with such names as Graham Stuart, Roberto Di Matteo, Carlton Cole and Eddie Newton it promises to be a great night for one of Swansea’s true legends.
Over the two and a half years we have worked together, I have come to know Roger well and believe you me, it hurt him as much last week as any of us to believe that we could go down. This is his club and everyone will have heard him talk about it with a passion. He deserves this match more than anyone who has been granted them in the past in my opinion. He has survived the worst this club can throw at players with just the odd high built into it.
The game tomorrow is not about the result and we should all relate to the ability we will have to watch a game not worrying if we are winning or losing or how other teams are getting on. Your alternative is Real Madrid v Juventus on ITV but whilst the quality may be higher there, the principles are different – this is about a man who is not solely motivated by the cheque hitting his bank account each week.
Tickets are available in the club shop but it is also a pay on the gate game. Admission prices are £10 for adults and £5 for concessions in ALL areas of the ground. A special programme (below) has been produced by Colin Jones at the club at short notice and this is available at the price of £2 with a copy of the testimonial brochure thrown in.
Tomorrow will also be a special night for Swans fan John Dunster who will be taking Roger’s place in goal towards the end of the match as the winner of the testimonial raffle – it will be a huge moment for this young lad, please give him your support. Also, there will be a presentation to Roger by Dai Smith of the monies raised from the Race Nite together with guest appearances from ex-Swans in Julian Alsop and Stuart Roberts amongst others.
It will be a fun packed end to the season at the Vetch and if you’re a Swans fan then you simply must be there. Kick off is at 7.45pm.
As part of the testimonial team I would like to thank a few people without whom tomorrow night in particular would not have been possible. Dianne Griffiths, Colin Jones, Jackie Rockey and Peter Owen for their hard work in getting things organised, Brian Flynn for his assistance, those at Chelsea who have agreed to come down and in particular Wales manager Mark Hughes for his time. Tony Jenkins at Diff’rent Records for sponsoring the match programme. Also the other people who have helped during the testimonial year (or two) – Gareth Keen, Rich Lillicrap, the raffle ticket sellers last season, Gary Martin and Dai Smith at scfc.co.uk, Tony Santore and numerous other people. We couldn’t have done it without you and neither could Roger.

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