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Tuesday, 09 February 2016 (3074615)
Men-aces duo win places in Team GB squad for European Championships
by Henry James

TWO players from Skem Men-aces disability football team have been selected for the Team GB squad for the National Mencap European Championships.

James Hughes and Theo Duke will join the national team when they take part in the event in Geneva in May.

A total of five players from Skem Men-aces had been invited to the trials. The players travelled to the sessions in Knaresborugh in Yorkshire on their new bus.

Mim Eaton, coach of the Men-aces said: “The two hour journey was a mixture of excitement, nervousness and anxiety.

”I said to the lads you are already champions for getting this far, so you have done something right. I told them to just go and play football and what will be, will be.“

More than 100 players turned up for the trials and there were only 15 spots. Mim added: ”The lads knew what was expected of them, on and off the pitch. I had no need to give them the Respect talk about manners.“

In the first part of the day the players took part in a round robin competition and showed their strengths and weaknesses to the Team GB coaches.

For the second part, the players were split up into different teams.

GB coah Mark Summers announced the chosen players at the end of the day. Mim commented: ”James and Theo totally deserve their place. Everyone at the Men-aces is proud of them.

“I congratulated them all one by one as they all deserved a massive pat on the back. Josh Winstanley was brilliant in goal and he certainly impressed the coaches, Matthew Coppell, who has represented Team GB before, is a great reader of the game and is able to play in any position. Ash Stoneman wears his heart on his sleeve and puts in 100%.

”James Hughes is a massive engine with quick feet and is able to get back to help team mates out. Theo Duke is a talented players and being chosen for the trials was a massive boost for Theo.“

The Men-aces are now trying to raise the funds for the lads to go on the trip.


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