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'Player of the Match' Allan Riggs honoured at Foundation Awards

11 October 2023

Club News

'Player of the Match' Allan Riggs honoured at Foundation Awards

11 October 2023

Cambridge United Foundation were elighted to honour Allan Riggs with an award for ‘Player of the Match’ at our recent Awards Evening...

Allan is a stalwart of our Walking Football sessions, having attended for years as a member of the ‘Ambling Amber Army’.

However, Allan’s award on this occasion was not for football, but for his positivity and determination after a life-threatening event.

Back in May, the day after Cambridge United secured their League One status in such memorable fashion, Allan was part of a group of walking footballers participating in a tournament here at the Abbey. Allan’s team were playing in the first match and he scored an early goal to give them the lead. However, as the teams reset to begin play again, Allan collapsed onto the pitch, suffering a cardiac arrest.

Thanks to a rapid response from the Cambridge United Foundation (CUF) team present, Allan was given life-saving care, recovering a breathing pattern, before the emergency services arrived very shortly afterwards. Paramedics from the Ambulance Service, alongside an East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA) crew and a GoodSAM medical responder all provided the follow-on care required to stabilise Allan. He was then transferred to Papworth Hospital.

Thankfully, after an operation to fit two stents, Allan has made an excellent recovery, allowing him to resume his day-to-day life. Allan is a carer for his wife Helen and due to his determination and resilience in recovery, he has been able to resume this vital role.

Furthermore, Allan has not let his experience on that fateful day put him off attending CUF sessions. Indeed, he has often been back to visit his walking footballer friends, always with a smile and an incredibly positive outlook on life in general. We are always so pleased to welcome him along to the Abbey and other Foundation sessions!

To recognise Allan’s amazing recovery so far, as well as all those involved in his care, EAAA kindly invited everyone to their Cambridge base at Marshall’s airfield. This was a wonderful celebration of life and resilience which CUF staff were honoured to attend.

At the foundation’s Awards Evening, Allan spoke of his experiences and paid warm tribute to those who helped him. We were delighted to welcome Lisa Boyle and Josh Davis from EAAA onto the stage to present Allan’s well-deserved award.

Everyone connected with Cambridge United and Cambridge United Foundation sends Allan every best wish with his continuing recovery – he truly is the ‘Player of the Match’!

Read more about the Cambridge United Foundation Awards by clicking here.

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