Legend and club great

Tributes have been coming in following the passing of London Maccabi Vale CC (LMVCC) Life President Cyril Hooker.


A founder member of the club, Hooker played for the LMVCC for 50 years, including 25 as captain. Club chairman Alex Haffner said: “Cyril was a passionate supporter of the club and his absence will be sorely felt by all.”

Several former team-mates have also paid their respects. Marc Green said: “I remember him bowling me in a cup final and he was fuming. He was great to play with and frustrating to play against.”

Jon Daniels described Hooker as “a true gentleman who showed how the game should be played and he was a great supporter of the colts section”.

Howard Gold commented: “Aged seven, I remember losing my ball at a 2nd XI game I watched my dad play in. He drove me to Cyril’s house to look in the kit bag the following day . Sure enough, my old, misshaped ball was there, with not much seam left. I went to grab it but Cyril nudged my hand towards a slightly better quality ball. He was such a legend.”

* When is a goal not a goal? When it is chalked off by VAR. I’ve got an app set up on my mobile to notify me when a goal is scored in the Premier League. But on more than one occasion, upon checking my device, I discovered it was fake news. The introduction of VAR has become a living nightmare for firms who are set up to send alerts out as quickly as possible. Too quickly, in many cases.

I know many Arsenal fans who were celebrating what they believed was a late winner by Sokratis Papastathopoulos against Crystal Palace, which was reversed roughly two minutes later. But phones across the globe were pinging “goal”. People are paying small sums for a service but the novelty of giving customers good news is quickly followed by devastation.

* There’s a good match in store in Division One of the MGBSFL on Sunday as joint-leaders North London Galaxy take on Jewdinese. The game will have added spice following what can only be described as mind games by Galaxy player-manager Luke Lewis.

He said: “Jewdinese have always had a united group which I believe has seen them through games, rather than ridiculously talented footballers and they  have jeopardised that unity with their recruitment this year. We know Reiss Mogilner is a dangerous striker but when the physicality comes out he’s a different player. We’re going into the game full of confidence but we know that form is brushed aside when we play Jewdinese.” The Galaxy squad will be boosted up by the return of Josh Shack and Ethan Kessel.

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