On Wednesday David Boyle had the pleasureof hitting the road as the roving Roker Reporter as we were invited tothe launch of the latest SAFC fanzine to hit the shelves of all good newsagentsin the area and some not so good – Seventy3.
The magazine is the brainchildof lifelong Sunderland fans, and all round top blokes, Andrew Brewsterand Mal Robinson who have taken the plunge into the media world with theirbrand of nostalgia, folklore and general retro SAFC goodness. The magazineitself is fresh and modern, full to the brim with features, articles andinterviews with SAFC legends and past players such as Jimmy Montgomery,Gary Bennett, Nicky Summerbee, Darren Williams and Neil Wainwright withMichael Gray taking the helm as guest editor – an impressive list I amsure you will agree and this is only the first issue!
We here at The Roker Report havealso been getting in on the act with resident scribes Simon Walsh, GavinCallaghan and Chris Weatherspoon featuring within the glossy pages of Seventy3:
Chrishas penned a fantastic piece on the inception of Sunderland as a footballclub and the history leading up to the FA Cup win in 1937.
Gavin has taken an indepth look at current Black Cat’s boss SteveBruce’s managerial career, quite literally Geordie-born but Mackem-madeand has also put his pundrity reputation on the line with his predictionsfor the remaining SAFC fixtures.
Finally,the man that got us into this fine mess, Simon Walsh, was interviewed forthe magazine and gives an insight into the unprecedented rise to glorythat The Roker Report has seen since the blog hit the world wide web justfour months ago.
The Chesters Pub in Sunderlandwas the venue and some fine figures from SAFC’s illustrious past were on hand to help the Seventy3 lads celebrate their first issue. The prolificgoalscoring duo of Gates and Gabbiadini along with the wee Scotsman BobbyKerr were all in attendance as well as the participants of the Q&A;Micky Gray, Nicky Summerbee and Sunderland’s only Olympic medallist, boxerand twitter-addict, Tony Jeffries.
The night kicked off with BBC RadioNewcastle broadcasting their Total Sport phone-in from the comfort of thebar, with usual hosts Simon Pryde, ex Newcastle defender John Andersonand Marco answering the calls and interviewing a number of the lads behindthe magazine.
The looks on some of the Chesters’locals faces were priceless as a constant stream of former SAFC stars strolledthrough the doors and propped up the bar!
The party then moved upstairs,with some great music from local Rat Pack tribute artist Paul Martin before the Q&A session which was an absolute treat. Gray, Summerbee and Jeffrieswere on top form throughout and just for you Roker Report fans, here area few of my favourite quips and tales from the night:
Above: Jaffathinks boxing is boring, only does it because he is good at punching fellas.
Above: Thesleeping arrangements in the Summerbee household were suspect at timeswhen Mike and George Best brought home their footballing friends aftera heavy session.
Above: Mickey Gray vs. Wayne Rooney in a Manchester nightclub – KO victory for Rooney.
The lads are doing a few Q&Asessions around the North-East, so I don’t want to giveaway too many of their gems, but suffice to say, I would thoroughly recommend getting yourselfto any of their future Q&A’s, great entertainment.
By that time the free Bucks Fizzthat the scantily clad young Seventy3 girls were dishing out left, right and centre were beginning to take hold and I left Mal, Andrew and the ladsto celebrate into the night.
Rumours that paracetamol sales in Sunderlandwere up this morning may or may not be true.