Fundraising football marathon begins

FELIXSTOWE: Ipswich Town's stars may have a weekend off because of the international break, but for one group of players it's non-stop football all the way.

FELIXSTOWE: Ipswich Town's stars may have a weekend off because of the international break, but for one group of players it's non-stop football all the way.

The two squads of 18 players each are aiming to play the longest game the world has ever seen - and at the same time raise �10,000 for the Evening Star's Have a Heart campaign.

The current record for the longest match is a 36-hour marathon which saw Leeds Badgers beat Bristol Academy, with the ball hitting the net more than 400 times.

So, if it's goals you like, then get along to the Eastward Ho outdoor complex in Felixstowe and join the fun and give the players some support.

Super Blues legend Kevin Beattie kicked-off the match last night under the temporary floodlights at the edge of town site.

Ross Wishart, from the Adnams Licensed Trades League who is organising the event and will be taking part as a left back for AFC Claydon, said the match would continue non-stop with the aim to complete 40 hours of playing and secure a place in the Guinness Book of Records.

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He said: “All spectators are more than welcome as we need as much support as possible to help us get through this mammoth task.

“So please come on down to the ground to cheer on the guys and make a donation to our cause.

“We should finish sometime between 3pm and 4pm on Sunday .

“Everyone is really looking forward to it, though I can only imagine how tired we will all feel at the end of it.

“Each side will have seven rolling substitutes and so all players should play about 25 hours.”

In addition to raising money for a specialist heart centre at Ipswich, it is hoped to raise awareness of the current treatment for serious heart attack victims.

Give us your views on heart attack care - write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

FACTFILE: HAVE A HEART

Our 'Have a Heart' appeal is raising money to help fund a specialist heart attack centre at Ipswich Hospital;

Three high-tech primary angioplasty (PPCI) centres have been set up at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital, Papworth in Cambridge and Basildon in Essex, but not in Suffolk;

Serious heart attack patients are sent to these centres, facing much longer journeys for care than people living nearby, and therefore having less chance of survival;

Health bosses say Ipswich Hospital does not currently have the infrastructure or staff to provide the service;

We have been campaigning for a primary angioplasty centre to be set up in Ipswich so residents have the best level of care possible and don't face long journeys for treatment;

After successfully changing healthcare policy with our campaign, the 'Have a Heart' appeal is raising money to help set up a catheter laboratory at Heath Road

The Star is asking for just one pound from every person who may need care at Ipswich Hospital's cardiac department in the future - which would collect around �350,000;

The lab will originally be used to treat non-urgent heart operations but could eventually be expanded into a primary angioplasty centre.

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