Dear Diary Entry 101

A Welcome Invite

Jacqui Oatley in her primary role – high in the stand on commentary duty.

Monday, February 10: Was delighted to be asked by Jacqui Oatley to appear on the Wolves podcast she does with Tim Spiers. My contribution lasted at least half an hour but the part of the show I was not involved in was very much worth listening to beforehand as well.

Tuesday, February 11: An illuminating VAR-orientated night at the Wolves Fans Parliament meeting, with long-time former Premier League referee Chris Foy among us in Molineux’s International Lounge. It was an evening for dispelling a few popular myths and hearing the official line – interesting food for thought even for the majority in the room who are not enjoying the experience of this radical new addition to the game.

Friday, February 14: It’s always good to see Mike Stowell back at Molineux, even in the colours of a rival team. Had a chat with him after tonight’s entertaining goalless draw with Leicester, at which former Filbert Street strongman Matt Elliott and ex-England midfielder Carlton Palmer were also present on radio duty, along with Mel Eves and Andy Thompson. BT Sport’s Paul Ince was clearly visible in his role as television touchline expert.

Monday, February 17: Had the task of ringing John Richards, photographer Dave Bagnall, Steve Gordos and others to pass on sad news after being informed tonight of the death of our veteran former Express & Star sports editor Brian Clifford. John was more than an occasional visitor to our Queen Street office at the end of his magnificent playing career, partly because he was engaged by Brian as one of the paper’s columnists. The friendship between the two became firmer still through the desk’s legendary Christmas parties – also regularly attended by boxing promoter Ron Gray and on occasions by Kenny Hibbitt.

Thursday, February 20: Had an enjoyable and informal early-morning chat in the Molineux foyer with Steve Davis and was pleased to be reminded that Wolves’ current under-18 coach had faced the club with Burnley in the 1988 Sherpa Van Trophy final at Wembley. Hopefully he was back at the stadium for the demolition of Espanyol tonight in what was another highly agreeable Europa League experience.

Friday, February 21: It barely seemed worth going home before reporting back to Molineux for a 10 o’clock meeting in one of the Billy Wright Stand executive boxes this morning. I was thrilled to be asked to join John Richards, historian Pat Quirke, author Steve Gordos, the club’s former head of media Paul Berry, Express & Star journalist Nick Elwell and the Wolves Former Players Association’s Richard Green in deciding on future inductees to Molineux’s hall of fame. This first meeting of the new committee resulted in firm agreement…..with details set to be announced in the coming weeks prior to the hall of fame dinner on Friday, May 1.

Harry Davenhill.

Sunday, February 23: Great to renew acquaintances with two briefly used former Wolves midfielders around this afternoon’s big win over Norwich. Father-of-twins Elliott Bennett was on summarising duty for an East Anglian radio station and reported to the media room the day after going on as a substitute in Blackburn’s draw at Brentford. Some three hours later, I bumped into Fred Kemp – in the chippy no less! – and was interested to learn during our chat about recent games that he had competitive European experience from his post-Molineux spell at Southampton.

Monday, September 24: Was honoured to be asked to propose a toast to Harry Davenhill at his funeral near Bridgnorth today. There was a good representation from Wolves for the long-time Molineux corporate host and stadium tour guide, with my role made easier thanks to some lovely recollections sent over by Swedish Wolves chairman Truls Mansson.

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