Sir Tom Finney, who is known as one of the star player of his generation and one of a brilliant footballer to play on the field. While, Steve Fletcher who is known for his through the lower leagues as a brilliant centre-forward for AFC Bournemouth.
It is been announced that Fletcher would be the first recipient to be awarded with the Sir Tom Finney Award. The honor, which was previously titled Credit Game Award, will be presented to Fletcher by last year’s recipient Graham Alexander. Steve, who grew up to stories of Finney told by his grandfather Howe, who has played alongside with him for England three times.
Fletcher’s grandfather began his career at Hartelpool as a defender, and later joiner Derby, where he made over 200 appearances. He also played for Huddersfield prior to spells in Scotland before his retirement. “My granddad, my mum’s dad, played for England and for Derby when they won the FA Cup and he played for England a few times with Sir Tom Finney, Stanley Matthews, Stan Mortensen and Billy Wright,” Fletcher told BBC South Today.
“They are some big names and I’m very proud of that, so it is quite fitting that I’m the first recipient of this award. I’ve watched footage of my granddad in black and white. I’ve collected a lot of stuff he achieved over the years that my nanna passed down to me after he passed away. It is fabulous to see what he achieved. For me it will be a really proud occasion when I step on that stage and mention Sir Tom Finney because, for my granddad to have been in that same line-up as him for England on three occasions, from my perspective as his grandson I couldn’t be prouder.”
His grandmother kept in touch with Finney even after the death of her husband and Fletcher claimed that Sunday will be an emotional night for him. “It’s nice and I think it will shed a tear in my family.” Fletcher, who started his career at Hartlepool, and later joined the Cherries in 1992 where he scored 121 goals in 728 appearances.
“You have to have a great rapport with the supporters and people of Bournemouth,” he said. “I have put a lot of effort into making sure my time here in Bournemouth has been successful and the people have rewarded me back. I wouldn’t change it for the world.”
“I’m overwhelmed, proud and honoured to receive this accolade,” he said. “It’s something you never expect growing up as a child in the streets of Hartlepool. When you start as a boy kicking the ball around, all you dream of is playing one professional game and I played for 24 years and something like 836 games. Yes it was mostly in the third tier of English football, but it was still more than I ever dreamt of.
“I get emotional over things and to get this award for is something I will treasure for the rest of my life.”