On the ball for charity challenge

PUBLISHED: 10:36 08 March 2007 | UPDATED: 11:37 06 May 2010

Borneo-bound – Clive Laing and Jackie Harper

Borneo-bound – Clive Laing and Jackie Harper

FOOTBALL legends are taking part in the Professional Football Association Borneo Challenge 2007 to raise cash for the Children Today charity. And Clive Laing, from Baldock and his niece Jackie Harper are among those braving the humidity and terrain to joi

FOOTBALL legends are taking part in the Professional Football Association Borneo Challenge 2007 to raise cash for the Children Today charity.

And Clive Laing, from Baldock and his niece Jackie Harper are among those braving the humidity and terrain to join their team head, ex-Manchester City player David Oldfield, in the extreme challenge.

The couple have pledged to raise a minimum of £6,000 and need to do that within the next four weeks to take part in the nine-day event in June which takes in mountain biking along jungle paths, trekking through dense jungle, abseiling off mountain ridges, white water rafting along the Padas River and climbing 4,095 metres to the summit of Mount Kinabalu.

Clive, from Ashtons Lane, who describes himself as a "local businessman and company director" said: "I am 43 and fortunate to have two great healthy kids. Emma is nearly 16 and Dean is nearly 13.

"For several years I have personally known the national director of Children Today, Alan Dodd, and he invited me to take on this challenge to raise desperately needed money for these disabled sick kids.

"I found one of his speeches deeply moving and he soon convinced me to help him out."

And it helps that Clive is a bit of a sports fanatic.

He said: "I have always been reasonably fit and played a lot of sport so a physical challenge with six football legends in aid of a great cause became a fairly easy decision for me.

"I played local football for many years and when I retired I took up coaching. I have managed Baldock Town Youth Templars for the past seven years.

"I am a member of Letchworth Golf Club and am vice-captain of the Letchworth Diggers, a golf society at Letchworth Golf Club that raises money specifically for the RDA, a disabled riding school in Graveley.

"I play table tennis in the local league and I recently joined Cannons health club to improve fitness in preparation for this event."

Clive's niece Jackie, 30, from St Neots, has taken part in marathons, and has sky dived and abseiled for charity.

She said: "I will do some serious training, I'm really looking forward to it. Challenge is the right word for it definitely!"

Alomg with Oldfield, team captains include Neville Southall (ex-Everton), Peter Nicholson (ex-Bolton Wanderers), Alan Kennedy (ex-Liverpool), Simon Garner (ex-Blackburn Rovers) and Lee Martin (ex-Manchester United).

Clive said: "There are various ways that you can help us and we have set up a website that makes donating very simple - www.just giving.com/cliveandjackie


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