I.T. expert Dave Ward has announced his retirement from international football in a formal letter to England boss Steve Mclaren.
Speaking from outside a pub in Staines, Dave said ‘For years I felt as if the world was at my feet and that I could achieve anything I wanted. But now I find myself nearing the end of my meaningful playing career. I still draw great pleasure from playing the beautiful game and always felt that my relative seniority gave me wisdom coupled with the precociousness of today’s youthful talent. However as time has marched unstoppably onwards, the advancing years have taken much of my former sharpness and pace; making it harder and harder to meet the challenge the of the world’s best players on a level playing field. It is for this reason that I must, regrettably, announce my retirement from international football. I feel at 37 years of age, my best days are behind me. I can no longer compete at the very highest level and consequently I think I should not be considered for inclusion in future England squads.’
David has played intermittently for his work’s five-a-side team, including a couple of eleven-a-side games that were organized against the firm’s Maidenhead branch. The defender’s distinctive style will be remembered by anyone who saw the ball fly directly upwards every time he attempted to clear it.
‘I am looking forward to spending more time with my family, relaxing and generally enjoying life without the associated pressures that come with international competition. I may also invest in a small country pub, ideally with unexplained farming equipment hanging from every wall. Should my dream become reality, I hope you will one day stop in and join me for a pint.’
Mr Mclaren has yet to formally accept Ward’s retirement; possibly indicating he may yet be called into action against Estonia in October, although Dave’s mate Gary remains available for international duty.