Northern Ireland v Korea Republic

One of William Hamilton’s ‘Norn Iron’ tattoos.

Andrew Davis’s tattoo

Beth Robinson is in there somewhere.

Speaking of abject pain in the name of our wee country, another proud wife alerts us to her husband’s ‘beyond the call of duty’ fandom. Take it away Danielle White: “My other half Mark was waiting on a hernia operation for nine months and by September 2017 it was made urgent.” OK… where’s this going? “He got a call to go in on the 4th of October and told the nurse it wouldn’t be possible as he had to go to Norway. The doctor asked was it a business trip and he said, ‘No, I’m going to watch Northern Ireland play in a World Cup qualifier’. The nurse was taken aback and asked him to get his priorities right.” Luckily, though, for our plucky supporter the good old NHS understood his dilemma and rescheduled the op. As Helen says: “He’s a true GAWA follower.” Hope the hernia’s sorted Mark. And, finally, no true football fan can resist the temptation to dress their child or pet in full footy regalia. Resistance is futile, so we leave you with ‘Keady’s Number One!’ golden retriever Honey Boyd and Lisa Robinson’s 10-year-old daughter Beth, both festooned in full green and white Superfan attire (see pictures on these pages). “Beth is Northern Ireland mad and never misses a home game,” says her loving mum. “This was her at the last home game lol.” Lol indeed. Are you OK in there Beth?

John explains: “My mum was at my home on standby to take my wife Laura to the Ulster if needed. “Good news,” he adds, clearly celebrating that life- changing moment when the wee one arrived. “I got to see the match... all the match.” Oh right. “Katie was born the very next day. Was close enough.” Of course, childbirth is a wee bit sore, but nothing screams agony like a gigantic tattoo. Nurse, the screens please… Tattoo Tale 1: Andrew ‘Smurfy’ Davis from Banbridge got an ‘Ulster Boys Making All The Noise’ tattoo two weeks before France. And so impressive was his inked calf that it made the pages of the Daily Mirror. Job well done Smurfy. Tattoo Tale 2: Helen Hamilton sent in pics of husband William's amazing inks. “They were done last year during the World Cup campaign,” explains Helen of her husband’s one true passion. “He was so keen to get it finished he went for twice weekly sittings.” Even the Mona Lisa didn’t pose for that long. William’s tattoo roll of honour is, says Helen, a collection of all things Norn Iron and it includes NIFC, Dare To Dream and the mighty George Best. “He's thinking about the other arm now, maybe a Jonathan Rea sleeve.” We’ll allow that William. Mind you, if there’s any justice in the world, the Superbike supremo should have a tattoo of William Hamilton. Seems only fair.


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