New Longton Rovers U10s take on Race for Life in Preston for their football coach who has cancer

Members of  New Longton Rovers U10 Blacks who are doing Race for Life in Preston to support head coach Andy Nicholls
Members of New Longton Rovers U10 Blacks who are doing Race for Life in Preston to support head coach Andy Nicholls
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When head football coach Andy Nicholls was diagnosed with cancer, team members raised their game to show their support.

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Andy Nicholls, of Ingol, who has oesophageal cancer, with his son Ryan and wife Claire

Andy Nicholls, of Ingol, who has oesophageal cancer, with his son Ryan and wife Claire

Andy, of Ingol, was touched to discover eight youngsters from New Longton Rovers U10 Blacks and their mums will take on Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life at Moor Park, in Preston, on Sunday June 17.

The 32-year-old was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer last February, and took a back seat in coaching but has been inspired by the team’s constant show of support.
He said: “Two years ago I was struggling to eat and doctors thought it was acid reflux. But I wasn’t convinced and so after more persistence, I had a camera down my throat which found the cancer.
“I have had chemotherapy which has shrunk the cancer but my last scan before Christmas noticed the cancer on my lung. I am now having a different form of chemotherapy which is using my immune system to fight it.
“Doctors are not confident about it going away and the cancer has been classed as stage four. It is just a case of having treatment and fighting it.

“I was told it is very rare for a person of my age to get this type of cancer.
“I just want to encourage people not to take no for an answer if they think something is wrong. Cancer was the last thing I thought the problem was and it came as a big shock.
“I managed to stay at work at BA Systems, in Warton, for a year but now I have taken a medical retirement.
“I stepped back from being a full time head coach to an assistant manager, helping out with the team.”

Among those taking part in Race for Life is his 10-year-old son Ryan and his wife, Claire.
Andy added: “I think it is brilliant some members of the team and their mums are doing Race for Life. Some did it last year and raised £2,000.
“It is also great to see the boys doing it too.”

Jackie Singleton, of Penwortham, is one of the mums taking part, along with her 10-year-old son Luke.
The 49-year-old said: “We did this last year to support Andy and wanted to do it again this time.
“Andy was there last year and it makes you realise how much this can help people.
“It is great the children are getting involved and that they understand why they are doing it. They asked to do it, which is lovely.”
To support the team visit http://www.fundraise.cancerresearchuk.org/team/new-longton-blacks-under-10-mums

Race for Life Pretty Muddy events for both children and adults will be held at Moor Park on Saturday June 16. A 5k and 10k event will be held at Moor Park on Sunday June 17. To enter Race for Life visit http://www.raceforlife.org or call 0300 123 0770.