Sports Gazette

by sports journalism students at St Mary's University, London

Hampton fans walks to Dartford after tweet backfires

Posted on 23 March 2019 by Benjamin Jones

Have you ever tweeted something you regret?

Well the chances are that it did not backfire so spectacularly as it did for Hampton and Richmond Borough FC fan Alec James.

Alec, a loyal fan who follows the Beavers home and away, headed to the away fixture at Oxford City having not seen his side win away in the National League South since their 2-0 victory at Truro on 15th September.

This combined with the side’s run of one win in 12 and the frustration of Sam Cox not extending his loan stay at the Beveree, prompted Alec to get into a discussion with club manager Gary McCann on Twitter.

He then proposed the following.

Little did he know what was in store. McCann’s side went to Court Place Farm and achieved what they had not done in their previous nine outings combined, score five goals.

Strikes from Marcel Barrington, Zak Joseph, Ruel Sotiriou and a Chris Dickson double gave the Beavers a remarkable 5-3 win and ensured Alec would have to dig out his walking boots.

True to his word, Alec promised to make the 29-mile journey to Dartford on foot. (Click here to see the route)

He took along good friend Chris Hirst and used the walk as an opportunity to raise money for the club through online sponsorship.

The moment Alec and Chris arrived at Dartford’s Princes Park following their 28.8 mile walk from Hampton’s Beveree Stadium.

After setting off at 2:30AM, the lads made it to Princes Park with over an hour and a half to spare and were greeted with a heroes welcome and were invited onto the pitch before kick-off to celebrate their achievement.

McCann said: “The efforts Alec and Chris put in was brilliant and a big, big well done to them. It’s extra pleasing for me as they’ve made it clear they want to contribute to the club’s budget for the remainder of the season.”

The lads were rewarded as the Beavers put on a fine performance to draw 2-2 against their play-off chasing opponents, only being denied victory by a cruel stoppage-time deflection on Darren McQueen’s shot.

The final total raised came to £1,334 and although it was a tremendous success for the club, Alec is sure to think twice before making such bold promises in future.