At half-time during that game, Ladbrokes trading director Mike O'Kane presented a cheque for £25,000, most of which will go to the Matt Hampson Trust Fund and spinal research. The donation will also help fund the Matt Hampson Bowl, the American Football extravaganza taking place at Welford Road on Bank Holiday Monday, May 28. That event will see a re-united Leicester Panthers side, including Tigers' World Cup-winning captain Martin Johnson, take on the 2007 Collegiate Bowl finalists Loughborough Aces, with all the proceeds going to Matt's trust.
"One of our players works for a company who do a lot of work for Ladbrokes and he asked them if they could provide any sponsorship or come up with any assistance," said Dave Hagger, one of the key figures behind the Panthers. "Ladbrokes have got a charity arm which involves their staff and they said they'd be keen to help out. Mike O'Kane came all the way here from London, met with Tigers president Roy Jackson, and 20 minutes later he'd decided to give £25,000 to the trust. We'd talked a number beforehand but nothing had actually been quantified. As Roy said, 20 minutes to get £25,000 is fantastic and we'll have plenty more of that if we can!"
More information on the build up to the Matt Hampson Bowl will appear on this site and on www.matthampson.co.uk
Tickets for the game can be purchased from the Tigers ticket office, costing just £5 for adults, with under-14s gaining free entry.