Beattie joins Town stars in Hall of Fame
KEVIN Beattie, voted by Ipswich Town fans as the club's best-ever player, was last night inducted into the Blues' Hall of Fame.And the former England international was joined by three other Town stalwarts during the 29th annual reunion dinner at Portman Road.
KEVIN Beattie, voted by Ipswich Town fans as the club's best-ever player, was last night inducted into the Blues' Hall of Fame.
And the former England international was joined by three other Town stalwarts during the 29th annual reunion dinner at Portman Road.
John Elsworthy, who won a First Division championship medal for the Blues in 1962 and also two Third Division (South) medals and one Second Division, was also honoured along with his former team mate Jimmy Leadbetter and Dutch midfielder Frans Thijssen.
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These four join Mick Mills, John Wark, Ray Crawford and Ted Phillips, who were made inaugural members of the Hall of Fame last year.
Beattie was dubbed the new Duncan Edwards when he burst on to the scene as a teenager and he went on to make 307 appearances for Ipswich and scored 32 goals.
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If it had not been for persistent knee problems - and other knocks - he would have played many more games and won more than his handful of England caps.
Elsworthy was also present last night to receive his award, and the wing half made 434 appearances and scored 73 goals.
Leadbetter passed away in July 2006, and the award is going to be made to his family. He made 373 Town appearances and scored 49 times.
Thijssen was unable to travel over from Holland last night, and the man who played a leading part in the success Ipswich Town enjoyed under Sir Bobby Robson, will be presented with his award later in the year. He made 170 appearances and netted 16 times.
Former Town players Simon Milton and Bryan Hamilton selected the first four members of the Hall of Fame, and it was Milton and Hamilton along with Mills, Wark, Crawford and Phillips who selected the new recruits.
“It is anticipated that we will increase the Hall of Fame again next year,” said Milton. “And the four newest members will also then be included in the selection process.”
There were 170 at last night's reunion, which included 70 ex-players, coaches and officials who had travelled from all parts of the globe.
Milton, Hamilton, Mills, David Linighan and Allan Hunter played a game of golf yesterday, with most of the 70 ex-players taking in Town's Coca-Cola Championship home match against QPR this afternoon.