Can there be any sight more touching than that of a pretty young mum, smiling down at a small boy as she mugs him?
That’s exactly what greeted spectators of this Sunday’s play-off at Wembley. Celebrating his winning hat-trick, Preston footballer Jermaine Beckford threw his shirt into a crowd of young fans. Into the throng of delighted boys waded Vickie Timbrell, a 31 year-old mother of two from Manchester. Fortunately for Vickie, she had the iron grip to wrest the T-shirt from Ted Dockray’s trembling, eight year-old hands. Unfortunately, the whole thing was caught on live TV.
Denounced by the media, damned by Twitter, Vickie has rallied to her own defence. She claims the truth of the incident has been misrepresented; she’s actually friends with Ted’s family, and will clear things up with them personally on her return home. (Meanwhile, an ad that went up on Gumtree, purporting to offer Beckford’s jersey for £1,500, has been swiftly taken down…)
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