NOT even Sunderland Football Club could hold up baby Harry’s entrance into the world.
The newborn made his grand entrance in the back of a car, hurriedly parked in a Penshaw driveway, as match-day traffic held up his anxious parents’ dash to hospital.
Beaming 19-year-old mum Sarah Keary said: “I couldn’t believe it, it happened so quickly.”
The drama took place on the night of SAFC’s Premier League home game with Chelsea as Sarah and partner Gary Sinclair were being taken to Sunderland Royal Hospital’s maternity unit.
The car was being driven by Sarah’s aunty, Catherine Keary, when the expectant mum realised she wasn’t going to be able to hold on any longer and faced giving birth in the back of a Nissan Almera as opposed to a maternity ward.
Grandmother Margaret Scott was herself on the way to the match, and HGV driver granddad John Scott was in London, working and listening to the game on the radio.
All was going smoothly until Catherine, Gary, Sarah and baby-to-be encountered problems along the A690, which was full of fans heading to the Stadium of Light.
“Just as we got to the Jaguar garage the road was blocked,” said Gary, 22.
“So we had to go over the grass verge to turn left and go through Shiney Row.”
“I was really worried,” said Sarah. “My contractions were getting quicker.”
They did not get far past the mini-roundabout before her waters burst, so they pulled over into a drive in Penshaw.
Catherine had to ask a householder exactly where they were, while Gary directed the ambulance crew to the car, but baby Harry was unwilling to wait.
“His head was right out by then,” said Sarah. “Catherine had to help us deliver the rest of him.”
It was all over in a flash. “I didn’t even know what time he was born,” said Sarah. “None of us thought to look at the clock.”
Happy and healthy, Harry weighed in at 8lbs and is brother to Alexis, who is a year and a day older.