Sir Jack Hayward, a legendary figure in the history of Wolverhampton Wanderers, celebrates his 90th birthday today.
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Chief Executive Jez Moxey has penned the following message, on behalf of everyone at Wolves, for the man who was inducted in the Club’s Hall of Fame in 2011.
“On behalf of everyone at the Club I’d like to take this opportunity of wishing Sir Jack a very happy and hearty 90th birthday.
“When Sir Jack took over the reins here at Molineux, the stadium was in a dilapidated state and the team had just begun the recovery process following its well documented financial difficulties.
“Sir Jack’s millions turned the stadium into one of the most modern in the country and we began to see in the old gold and black the calibre of players that, before his arrival and contribution to the revival, would have been deemed well out of reach of the club.
“His love of Wolverhampton Wanderers has, without doubt, made a huge dent to his bank account but it mattered not to him – his only desire was to see the club successful once more.
“I know that his cherished dream was to see the team lift the FA Cup at Wembley and, in 1998, that dream was almost realised when the team got through to the FA Cup semi-final stage of the competition where they lost out narrowly to Arsenal.
“But he bore the disappointment well wearing that famous smile and, whilst it wasn’t the FA Cup, who will ever forget the look of joy on his face and the thumbs up when Wolves beat Sheffield United in the play-off final at the Millennium Stadium to reach the Premier League in 2003.
“Sir Jack always had a good relationship with the supporters of the club and it is easy to understand why, for his passion and love of Wolves mirrors that of our fans.
“It seems a long time distant from 1990 when he first purchased the club but his 17 years in charge until he sold Wolves to Steve Morgan in 2007, were never without colour and interest.
“Despite the many millions that he poured into Wolves, it was typically generous of the man that he should sell the club for a nominal £10. It remains a truly remarkable gesture.
“Born a decent goal-kick away from the ground, for the vast majority of his 90 years Sir Jack Hayward has been, above all, a supporter of Wolves.
“From his boyhood days when he crawled under the turnstiles to get into an otherwise full ground, through his years as owner of the club right up to today in his role as President – he has always been an avid fan.
“One thing is for sure, the Wolves supporters of today, and those of tomorrow, will always owe a big debt of gratitude to Sir Jack for what he did in helping bring the Club back from the brink.
“Happy Birthday Sir Jack.”