We are delighted to say that we received an overwhelming response from supporters wanting to play against Manager Andy Hessenthaler and his Invitational XI in the fundraising match at Crabble on August 8th.

Two teams of supporters will play – one in the first half before the other plays the second and emails to all those playing were sent out yesterday (Thursday).

Those playing were the ones whose bids were the best we received before bidding closed on July 16th.

As part of their winning bid, players will get to keep their official match shirt – a replica, regular fit, blue Kappa one.

The two goalkeepers will also keep their match shirts, while we will also be providing shorts and socks for all players too.

Hessenthaler, who will be the player/manager of his side,  said he was it was great to see so many fans get behind the initiative.

“The response has been absolutely terrific to be fair – we’ve even got a referee who bid to take charge!!

“We’d like to thank everyone for what has been a tremendous show of support for this game and belief in what we are doing at the club.

“There is a really good rapport between the players, the staff, and the fans, showing we are all in this situation together and this game is a great way for us all to get together as a community on a fun day.

“I am really looking forward to the day.”

The match kicks off at 1pm and fans are very welcome to attend with admission by way of a donation.

The Centre Spot will also be open.

Hessenthaler’s squad includes:

Jon Wallis, Lee Browning, Tom Wynter, Adam Birchall, Frannie Collin, Matt Carruthers, Nathan Elder, James Strouts, Craig Stone, Lee Shearer, Sammy Moore, Connor Essam, Nicky Southall, and James Rogers.