University match is perfect tribute to tragic Steve

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A FOOTBALL match between past and present Univeristy of Chichester students raised money in memory of a young man who died in a car crash.

On November 2, 2005, Steve Bernard was one of the students killed in an accident on the A27.

The Steve Bernard Foundation was set up in his memory and since its creation in 2006, more than £160,000 has been raised to support sporting projects across the south and farther afield.

The foundation aims to provide guidance, financial support and mainly equipment to a wide variety of clubs and individuals in order for them to participate in what Steve loved the most - sport.

On Friday, the University of Chichester men’s football club staged an exhibition match in honour of the former student. A staggering 300 people passed through the turnstiles at Chichester City’s Oaklands Park ground, raising around £800 for the foundation.

Among those present were ex-Pompey centre-half Linvoy Primus and Steve’s father Tony.

The current university first team took on a team dubbed as a ‘classic WSIHE’ XI, formed by alumni who had previously represented the first team in years gone by.

The university could count three England universities squad members - Kenneth Hagan, Dan Smith, and Ben Chick - in their ranks and took the lead early on through a Scott Dormer header from close range.

The old guard drew level shortly after, when university lecturer Dan Potter slid in to score. Then came the moment of the night as last year’s sportsman of the year Will Holmes picked up the ball around 30 yards out and sent a dipping half-volley flying past his former team mate Matt Evans to rapturous applause.

Holmes added a second from close range and Dan Evans added gloss to the scoring late on, the game finishing 4-1.

Special guest Primus handed over the Steve Bernard Charity Cup to winning manager Dan Watts and Will Holmes was selected as man of the match by guest of honour Tony Bernard.

Event organisers Matthew Winter and Marc Slowey were delighted by the evening’s success. Winter said: “It was great to see all the university come together to support a foundation in memory of a former club member.

“Hopefully this is the start of a growing tradition, and we’d like to say a massive thank-you to all those who helped out.”

Visit www.stevebernardfoundation.org for more information.

by JAMES SANDFORD