Football fundraiser For Luca

South Wales Argus: Robert Earnshaw (left) with Luca (centre), his family and dignitaries Robert Earnshaw (left) with Luca (centre), his family and dignitaries

TWO football teams battled it out over 24-hours in Newport on Saturday to raise money for the For Luca appeal - and got a visit from Cardiff City star Robert Earnshaw.

The match, which started on 10am on Saturday on the new 3G artificial pitch at the Newport International Sports Village, aimed to raise £7,000 for three-year-old Luca Williams who lost his legs to meningococcal septicaemia.

Gavin Williams, who is Luca's second cousin, said each player in the squads of 18 were sponsored, with some from as far as North Wales.

"We're working a rota so people can get a break during the night and can have an hour's shut eye," he said.

He said he had so far raised nearly £6,000 and was hoping to earn more than £7,000.

The teams wore kits donated by CMS teamwear in Pontyclun, with the for Luca symbol was stitched in.

There was praise for the players from Mo Syed, Luca's father: "It's fabulous. The one thing that's great is that all the players have turned up in torrential rain, all of them smiling and continuing to play with gusto.

"Its amazing and we canÕt thank them enough."

The Luca campaign aims to raise £1.5 million to help fund special prosthetics for Luca, to be replaced as he grows up, which are not available through the NHS.

To donate, visit justgiving.com/forluca, or for more information visit facebook.com/forluca1 or follow @for_luca

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