A POPULAR sports fan has been remembered with a charity cricket match.
Family and friends of George Summerside gathered at Wearmouth Cricket Club in Thompson Road, Southwick, to pay tribute to the 53-year-old.
The dad-of-two from Roker, who died after falling from Marsden Grotto, was well known among cricket and football supporters and was a member of England cricket fans’ group, the Barmy Army
England cricket stars were among those to pay their respects to the retired firefighter after his death last year.
George, known by childhood nickname The Podge, travelled the world following the England team.
Though devastated by his death, his family decided to channel their grief by organising an annual fund-raiser for Chance to Shine, which encourages disadvantaged children to find a way forward through sport.
The second annual event saw a team from The Jackson pub take on a team from The Howard Arms in a 20/20 match billed as “The Clash of the Titans”. George’s brother Paul said: “The first event last year was a fantastic day, and we raised £2,500 for charity, which spurred us on to organise a match this year as well.
“George was a lifelong Sunderland and England football and cricket fan.
“After he retired, he would travel the world to watch the England cricket team, which is how he got involved with the Barmy Army. They do a lot of work for this charity behind the scenes, which is why we chose it to fund-raise for.”
Paul, 50, from Monkwearmouth added: “George would be so proud of what is being done in his memory, not only because it’s keeping his love of cricket alive, but because it’s helping charity too.”
The day also included a raffle and auction with prizes donated by Durham CCC, Marshall Murray, Henderson Butcher’s and D’Acqua.