Afghan duties sees Helston assistant miss out on cup final
HELSTON Athletic skipper Jamie Thomson has paid tribute to the Blues' assistant manager Richard Full, who will miss next month's Westinsure Cornwall Senior Cup – after being posted to Afghanistan.
While Helston face some crucial months ahead, in their bid for league and cup silverware, Full, who is a Lieutenant Commander, based at Culdrose, will be flying Sea King helicopters for the next six months.
He was on the Helston sidelines when James Miller's extra-time winner clinched their place in the Cornwall Senior Cup final for the first time since 1937.
But on the day Thomson leads Helston out at Saltash United's Kimberley Stadium on Easter Monday to face Bodmin Town, Full is likely to be patrolling the skies of Afghanistan.
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Thomson and his team-mates will be sure to spare a thought for Full on Helston's big day, given the impact he has had on the club's transformation from Combination League strugglers to Senior Cup finalists.
The Blues' skipper said: "Our manager, Sid Taylor, often takes a lot of the credit for our achievements, and rightly so. But Richard has been just as influential in the Helston dressing room.
"He has done a brilliant job. Sid is the motivator, but Richard gives the team-talks. He's very much the tactician at the club."
Last year, Full had the honour of carrying the Olympic lantern from his aircraft to the world famous signpost at Land's End, where the first torch was lit.
Thomson added: "It's such a shame he's not going to be at the final after leaving for Afghanistan, but hopefully we will all do him proud."
Helston were without a fixture at the weekend, but they return to action on Saturday with the visit of Dobwalls to Kellaway Parc as they look to close the gap on Division One West leaders Godolphin Atlantic.
It is now looking increasingly like a two-horse race for promotion after third-placed Wadebridge Town were held to a thrilling 4-4 draw against St Dennis on Tuesday night.
Helston trail Godolphin by 14 points, but now have four games in hand on the leaders, with the sides due to meet at Kellaway Parc on April 20.
Thomson said: "We've always had our sights set on Godolphin. We've just got to keep winning before we play them on April 20.
"We have a few games in hand, but that's the price you pay when you're doing so well in the cups."
Helston are also due to play Bodmin in the semi-final of the Throgmorton Cup at St Austell's Poltair Park on April 10.