Craig Foster of Australia competes for possession with Luis Garcia of Liverpool during the Liverpool Legends v Australian Legends exhibition match at ANZ Stadium, in Sydney, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY
Craig Foster of Australia competes for possession with Luis Garcia of Liverpool during the Liverpool Legends v Australian Legends exhibition match at ANZ Stadium, in Sydney, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY DAN HIMBRECHTS

Why Craig Foster pulled out of Lismore's Masters Games

FORMER Socceroo captain Craig Foster will not be playing at the Masters Games in Lismore this year.

Mr Foster was expected to play in the friendly competition later this month, but The Northern Star editor David Kirkpatrick received a letter today explaining why he will not attend.

He wrote:

I write to apologise to the organisers, players and local community for being unable to play in this year's upcoming Lismore Worker's Masters Cup. I am devastated to have to miss playing again with my former team-mates from over 38 years ago as part of the mighty Richmond Tweed 1981 U/12 NSW State Titles winning team. Those memories are still so vivid and our recent reunion so wonderful to see how a group of young kids can be united for life, through sport.

In attending the recent 50th birthday of the Goonellabah Soccer Club, the Hornets, I again had the chance to relive treasured memories with old teammates and coaches and was so much looking forward to being part of the football community that started my love of the world game and which led to life as a professional footballer, broadcaster and to many other fields of social justice through sport.

I have recently been asked to deliver a keynote speech at the UNGA (United Nations General Assembly) Conference 2019 in New York. This year's conference is titled 'Transforming Our World' and my oration will cover the #SaveHakeem campaign and the broader impact of sport across the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG's) including ending global poverty by 2030 and, unfortunately, the dates align.

The Masters Games is about the spirit of lifelong friendships, something I greatly value. But, this year, I will have to give my deepest apologies and make my best efforts to speak as a proud representative of our local community to the world.

Wishing my team, and all other competitors a wonderful tournament, I'll be watching and cheering from New York and look forward to seeing you all in Lismore again very soon. And to the boys, bring home the Cup! And don't pull too many muscles.

Regards

Craig Foster Former Socceroo Captain and Proud Lismorian.



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