ANT Middleton had the final word and who would stop him? –  when celebrities and former Woking FC stars got together for a charity football match at The Laithwaite Community Stadium last Sunday.

In a high-scoring thriller, the television adventurer’s decisive strike, drilled low across the face of goal into the far corner, gave his side the edge at 9-8.

The day was organised in support of Woking & Sam Beare Hospices, Cherry Trees, Halo Children’s Foundation and Emily Ash Trust, and representatives of the charities were quick to acknowledge the efforts of all concerned.

“The game was a great success despite the wet weather,” Krista Lougher, of Woking & Sam Beare Hospices, said.

“The players were great, entertained the crowd and everyone enjoyed themselves. Thanks to [organiser] Sellebrity’s team and Woking Football Club for making this amazing event possible.

“We were privileged to be involved and look forward to it next year.”

Debbie Boulter, community fundraising lead at Cherry Trees, added:  “What a day it was, the ground was buzzing.

“Ant Middleton was a big hit, taking time to pose with the Cherry Trees mascot, while Calum Best came down to support his friends despite being injured himself. For the youngsters it was all about Chunkz, the YouTuber.

“Then Woking assistant manager Martin Tyler went on for the last five minutes – a huge cheer went up. Thanks to all for putting it on for us.”

Tim Rolfe, chairman of the Emily Ash Trust, also enjoyed the afternoon.

“We had such a great day,” he said. “Good company, good football with the stars and all in the pouring rain. It didn’t detract in any way from the magic of the event.

“The money raised will make such a huge difference to the lives of families we are supporting. The team at Woking Football Club are brilliant, a credit to the sport and a huge asset to the local community.

“We are so grateful for all the hard work and will be supporting Woking wholeheartedly in the new season.”

Alia Jones, of Halo Children’s Foundation, had another reason to be pleased. “Halo was recently awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service 2021, the highest award given to local voluntary groups in the UK,” said the chief executive. “That is only possible with our great team of volunteers and supporters.”

For more pictures of the high-scoring thriller, get the 29 July edition of the News & Mail