Tennis Ace Excited For Season!

It was tennis ace John Lloyd, in his role as Great Britain’s Davis Cup captain, who got current world number one Andy Murray to wear a Wolves shirt in practice.

Lloyd also took Murray and the team to a Wolves game at The Valley back at the start of the Championship winning 2008/09 season as goals from Sylvan Ebanks-Blake and Sam Vokes (2) secured a 3-1 victory.


Lloyd, who was a close friend to the late Baroness Rachael Heyhoe Flint, now lives in America, but is back in England for the tennis grass court season and the other ‘Championships’ – at Wimbledon.


He has endured a tough battle of his own, against Prostate Cancer, with which he was diagnosed last year.


The 62-year-old, who had successful surgery, spoke to the EFL’s official charity partner Prostate Cancer UK during Wimbledon fortnight, opening up about his prostate cancer journey and hammering home the dangers of the disease.


“It’s one of those things where, to be quite frank, you never think it will happen to you,” says Lloyd.


“You just get very blasé about your health when you are in good shape. You don’t think about it.


“People need to be aware that someone who is in good shape, an athlete with no symptoms, can get prostate cancer.


“If you are over 50 get a check up or talk to your doctor.


“Men are a bit private about that sort of stuff and going to the doctors.


“We are sort of wimps to be honest; I’m the biggest wimp of all.


“Particularly when you think about areas ‘there’ it’s not something you particularly want to think about.


“So what you do is you block it off, you put it away, you think ‘that can’t happen to me’. You don’t bother.


“Well, guess what, you have to bother.


“It is one of the most curable cancers around if you get it early and you can have a normal life afterwards. I’m extremely lucky that everything has worked out well for me.


“And since I had prostate cancer I’m determined to spread the message and I’m proud to say the Man of Men pin badge will now be a regular part of my wardrobe.


“Since telling my story I’ve had people come up to me, people from the public at Wimbledon saying they are going to get check ups now. So I consider it if one person does it it’s a bonus.”


What then of Wolves, whom Lloyd follows closely from Across the Pond, including getting up at very unsociable hours, in American time, to follow games.


Just how did a young lad from Essex who went on to reach the top of his sport in Britain, end up supporting the mighty Wolves?


“Silly reason really,” he replies.


“The reason I supported Wolves when I was eight-years-old when all my friends supporter the Liverpool’s, Arsenal’s, Man United’s, was because I liked the gold uniform.


“I don’t know why, but I did, and I’ve been in love with them ever since.


“I stay with them no matter what.


“In California and Florida means getting up very early to listen to them on the computer, and if I was lucky enough to go to Wolves the late great Rachael Heyhoe Flint, who was a friend of mine, used to get me some good tickets and I loved it.


“I’m very passionate about it and this year I’ll be able to watch it on the computer and get pictures for the first time.


“I shall be watching every single game no matter where the heck I am or what time it is. And ill be supporting our glorious team into the Premiership.”


Yes Lloyd feels very confident about Wolves’ chances next season, believing a combination of British steel and some big money signings could provide a promising blend.


“I’ve followed Wolves since I was eight years old, so it’s a lot of years,” he explains.


“I love the team; I’ve loved them from when I was eight through the high areas and quite a few low ones, to be honest.


“Now they have new owners and are spending the dosh, and I like what I’m seeing.


“As long as we have some British players in there for a bit of steel and you combine that with the flair of the players that we seem to be signing, I’m backing us for promotion this season.


My word, you talk about competition, the Premiership is one thing but the Championship, getting out of it and you see the money that is being spent now….John Terry is in the Championship now, people like that.


“It’s a great league, the toughest one to get out of, probably in the world.


“But I think the Wolves boys can make it this year.”


Wolves players, like all teams in the Sky Bet Championship, will once again wear the Prostate Cancer UK badge on the back of their shirts this season, raising awareness of such a widespread disease.


How tremendous that all the players in the league can wear this tremendous badge now with pride and help cancer awareness,” adds Lloyd.


“The awareness and publicity you get from football players is second to none and its tremendous that everyone is supporting this great cause.”


*With thanks to Prostate Cancer UK for providing the quotes from John.  Click for more information.