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Testimonial Gala Dinner

Gala dinner is the next big event on the testimonial calendar for grateful Alec

10 January 2006

Veteran goalkeeper Alec Chamberlain says he is enjoying every minute of his testimonial season so far - and is now looking forward to his gala dinner at the Watford Hilton on February 25.

Former boss Graham Taylor, John Desborough, and BBC Sport presenter Garry Richardson have already confirmed they will provide the entertainment on Alec's big night, and not surprisingly tickets are already in great demand.

Alec, 41, has featured only in Carling Cup games this season, but remains very much a part of the first team squad, and has been keeping on loan 'keeper Ben Foster on his toes throughout the campaign.

"Obviously it would be nice to play, but Ben's been in great form all season and I suppose I have to be realistic and honest and admit that my playing days are coming to an end," said Alec, who now doubles up as the club's goalkeeping coach.

"It was great to get some games under my belt in the Carling Cup, and I was happy with my performances in all those games, especially at Wigan, who were going really well in the Premiership at the time, yet needed extra-time to beat us."

But Alec is still very much in the thoughts of the Watford faithful, who see him sitting on the bench as goalkeeping substitute every game, and the player himself has been overwhelmed at the goodwill shown to him this season.

"Everyone has been really kind and supportive, and I really appreciate that," said Alec. "Obviously the game against Charlton back in July was a great day, but I had a fantastic turn out for my race night, to the point that by popular demand we could be putting on another one before the end of the season.

"And the dinner at the Hilton in February is going to be a really glitzy affair, I'm really excited about it and very flattered that so many people are going out of their way to make it a really special event.

"I was really chuffed when Graham Taylor agreed to be our main speaker - he's very entertaining, but it was while he was manager that I had the best spell of my career, and he was a fantastic guy to play for.

"And I'm delighted that Garry Richardson has agreed to come along and speak. He's an outstanding after dinner speaker, and someone Iíve got to know after he did a feature on me for Football Focus before our FA Cup semi-final against Southampton two and a half years ago."

Tickets for the gala dinner are £75 each (including VAT) and as well as top class entertainment from the top table, there is also a band, a disco, and an auction. Said Alec: "There won't be many auctions, because people are coming along for a good night out, not to sit and watch an auction, but the items we have been promised will be well worth bidding for, so it should be entertaining just looking on."

And Alec has a message for everyone who has helped with, or supported his testimonial season so far. "From the bottom of my heart I say a sincere thank you to everyone - from people at the football club, to the testimonial committee, to all the supporters who have supported the events."

Tickets and sponsorship packages are available by contacting: or telephoning 07780 921969.

Spaces are limited so book early!

Ticket price £75 per guest inclusive of VAT

Written by Peter Jones, of the PR consultancy Red Alert Media.

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