Doddie Weir and Tony Hamilton react as The Lions Roar Match is Postponed

THE LIONS ROAR, United Against MND charity match scheduled to be played on Friday 8 May has this afternoon been postponed, the latest high profile event to be affected by the coronavirus health crisis.

Celtic FC Foundation teamed up with rugby legend Doddie Weir to put together the recently launched Lions Roar charity match that was to take place on the evening before Scottish Cup final – Celtic are scheduled to play Aberdeen in the semi-final next month, although that is also subject to postponement.

The news of the Lions Roar event being postponed would come as a surprise to no-one given the fast moving developments regarding sporting events across the world over the past 24 hours, with just about every sort now affected all over the world.

This evening’s statement on the official Celtic website confirmed that the Lions Road event was off for now and won’t be happening on Friday 8 May. Here’s how Celtic broke the news.

Regrettably, due to today’s decision in respect of this season’s remaining football calendar and the disruption to everyday life through the COVID-19 outbreak, Celtic FC Foundation and My Name’5 Doddie Foundation have taken a joint decision to postpone the charity legends match, The Lions’ Roar – United Against MND, which was scheduled for Friday, May 8.

We are so grateful to those supporters who have already purchased tickets for the match and we will offer a full refund. Online and booking line sales will be refunded automatically. Those who purchased tickets directly from the Celtic Ticket Office should return tickets there so that a refund can be processed. Opening hours are 11am-2pm, Monday-Friday (subject to COVID-19 restrictions).

In consultation with Doddie Weir and his team, Celtic FC Foundation will arrange a new fixture date and confirm full details – including a host of exciting names who have already committed their support – as soon as possible.

Celtic FC Foundation Chief Executive, Tony Hamilton, said: “There is a lot of uncertainty and upheaval caused by the outbreak of Coronavirus. Understandably, people are not looking as far ahead as May, and are currently concentrating on their families and colleagues.

“Both Foundations have agreed that the most sensible thing to do at this stage is to postpone until such times as we can put on an event that is befitting of the cause.

“It’s vital that we fill Celtic Park for this match and that remains our aim, but only when it’s right for everyone including Doddie Weir, the players, supporters and all staff at the Club and the Foundation associated with making this happen.

“We are fully committed to hosting this match at Celtic Park when there is a chance to raise funds for those who are suffering from MND, and to pay tribute to our own Jimmy Johnstone and the enormously brave and inspirational Doddie Weir.”

Doddie Weir added: “I completely understand the situation and where the priorities are at the moment. What’s important for people is their health and their families.

“All of us at both Foundations are very disappointed that we have to postpone this match, but the fact that we’ll have a chance to do it when the timing is right means that we’ll still get an opportunity to make a big impact where it’s needed.

“My thanks to everyone who has supported us to this point and I look forward to the plans for the new date and to the match itself.”

Meanwhile Neil Lennon has been giving his reaction to the decision today to suspend Scottish football indefinitely as a consequence of the coronavirus crisis. And Doddie’s own sport Rugby Union was also impacted today with the Six Nations match between Wales and Scotland being cancelled on the day before the event despite a considerable number of Scottish fans having already arrived in Cardiff.

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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