Nothing could be more fitting and poignant than launching the autobiography of rugby league legend Steve Prescott at Wembley ahead of Saturday’s Tetley’s Challenge Cup Final between Leeds Rhinos and Castleford Tigers.
The book, entitled One in a Million, traces Steve’s long and sadly unsuccessful battle to fight a rare form of cancer, his phenomenal fund raising in aid of charity and his trophy-winning career which included two Wembley victories over Bradford Bulls in 1996 and 1997 when playing for St Helens - his home town club.
As a youngster, he also experienced what winning at Wembley felt like - wearing the black and white colours of Widnes and watching his dad, Eric, help the Chemics to a 18-9 victory over Hull KR in 1981.
Steve, who also played for Hull FC and Wakefield Trinity Wildcats, also delivered the match ball at the end of one of his many gruelling fund-raising events in 2009 and presented the Challenge Cup in 2010.
nLangtree Park will also stage its own book launch combined with a sports forum on Thursday, August 28 (7pm).
Former team-mates will go through anecdotes of their times spent with Steve and all guests will receive a signed copy of One in a Million and enjoy a hot-pot supper.
Tickets, priced £25, can be ordered online at www.spfund.co.uk (and collected on the night), or purchased directly from the Saints ticket office.
However, anyone who has already pre-ordered the book can puchase a ticket for £10.
Written with the assistance of St Helens-born sports journalist Mike Critchley, One in a Million is published by Vertical Editions and, like tickets for the forum, can be purchased by accessing: www.spfund.co.uk
nHad a telephone call on Monday from Saints historian and fellow scribe, Denis Whittle, informing me that former Knowsley Road powerhouse forward Billy Bretherton had died at the age of 84.
Pemberton-born Bill played for the club in the early 1950s and was a member of the side beaten 15-10 by Huddersfield at Wembley in 1953.
According to Denis it now leaves full back Glyn Moses as the only surviving member of that side which also featured Duggie Greenall, Steve Llewellyn, Don Gullick, Stan McCormick, Jimmy Honey, George Langfield, Alan Prescott, Reg Blakemore, George Parsons, George Parr and Ray Cale.