Lee grabs prize courtesy of Bet Butler.
A lucky Sunderland fan was walking on air recently after winning a once-in-a-lifetime trip to see his idols train at the Academy of Light, followed by lunch with the team, courtesy of Bet Butler, official betting partner of Sunderland AFC.
Lifelong Black Cats fanatic Lee Baxter entered the competition when he signed up to Bet Butler earlier in the year, then promptly forgot he’d even entered, so it was a big surprise when he received the call to tell him he’d won.
He took his uncle David Baxter, another season card holder, along for the visit, which included a guided tour of the world-class facilities at the Academy of Light.
“I couldn’t believe it when I found out I’d won. The prize was amazing and it’s a day we’ll never forget,” said Lee, a civil servant who lives in Washington.
“After the guided tour, we watched the squad train and then John O’Shea brought the whole team over to sign the shirt we’d been given. After that we had lunch in the refectory with the players. The term ‘money can’t buy’ is a bit over-used these days, but it’s certainly true in this case.”
Lee was presented with the Sunderland shirt as part of his competition prize and the whole team took turns to sign it, giving him a lasting memento of the visit. The pair were very lucky as only a select few fans get to see inside the multi-million pound training facility, one of the finest in the world, which was opened in 2003 and has been further improved since.
“We got together with our colleagues at Sunderland to come up with a genuinely amazing prize that wouldn’t be available anywhere else,” said Dave Evans, spokesperson for Bet Butler. “It’s great to hear that Lee and David had an unforgettable day and we’re grateful to everyone at the club for making it happen.”
Bet Butler is the UK’s biggest betting broker, searching 60 leading bookmakers to deliver the best odds without the need for multiple accounts.