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Last Updated: Thursday, 17 August 2006, 06:30 GMT 07:30 UK
England goalie nets family's bet
Chris Kirkland
Chris Kirkland came on in the second half of the friendly
The family of goalkeeper Chris Kirkland have won close to 10,000 on a bet after he took the field for England in the friendly match against Greece.

Eddie Kirkland put on a bet 12 years ago that his son would win an England cap before turning 30.

The syndicate can collect their winnings after Leicester-born Kirkland, 25, who is on loan from Liverpool to Wigan, came on in the second half.

Mr Kirkland told BBC News: "I am so pleased for him."

"A few years ago I was confident that my son would play for England and he has done it tonight - fantastic," Mr Kirkland said.

"He was 14 or 15 at the time and my family, friends and work colleagues put a bet of 100 at 100 to one and it has come good tonight. Absolutely fantastic.

'Worth waiting for'

"He has got the right attitude and ability and the talent. I am so pleased for him. He has deserved it.

"It has been a long time waiting and we hope for many more of them. It has been nine or 10 years now but it has been worth waiting for."

Bookmakers William Hill said Eddie Kirkland had staked 98.10 with the firm at 100/1, and would receive a cheque for 9,908.10.

The goalkeeper had said the bet had become the bane of his life.

He said a few days ago: "My dad never mentions it, but it's brought up all the time by other people and that's annoying.

"Hopefully I can get it over and done with as soon as possible and then people can stop talking about it."

Kirkland has been dogged by a series of injury setbacks, most notably a back problem.

England won against Greece 4-0.

Extra police for England friendly
16 Aug 06 |  Manchester
England 4-0 Greece
16 Aug 06 |  Internationals

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