Written by Susan Hanks

In The News

Do it for Leicester, Gary!

Gary Lineker said that if Leicester won the Premier League, he’d present the first Match of the Day of the next season in his trollies. That’s this Saturday. Susan Hanks would like to suggest some specific pants.

Gary Lineker

Smalls screen: will Gary prove to be a man of his word?

These days, we’re saturated in a society where some members are desperate to get big celebrities into their smalls. *drifts into reverie about Daniel Craig*

I recently met Deborah Price, a lady from Leek with that very quest, but with a heart-warming tale to match any day.

You may be familiar with the comments made by Gary Lineker as reported in our newspapers, on television or via the man himself on Twitter:

"YES! If Leicester win the @premierleague I'll do the first MOTD of next season in just my undies.”
Well, they did indeed win. And the first official Match of the Day of the next season is on Saturday.

Deborah tells us why it’s so apt that he should wear her pants in particular…

Susan Hanks: OK, when you say your pants, please can you be more specific about what they are and why Lineker should wear them.

Deborah Price: There are a few reasons so I’ll list them.

a) Like underdogs Leicester City fighting to win the Premiership, I worked my absolute arse off to set up british-boxers.com. It’s been three years of blood, sweat and tears and I’ve finally sent our first order into Harrods.

I’ve financed the whole business by selling the products at artisan markets across Cheshire and Staffordshire. I’ve fought for British design and manufacturing and I’ve controlled my time so I could be there for my disabled kid too. I’ve had no corporate finance, no rich dad and no leg-ups. Just great family and friends and hard, hard work.

b) We make our British Boxers in the Midlands.

c) We have the right shade of blue and it’s ace.

d) My great, great, great grandfather was the first world heavyweight boxing champion Jem Mace – a massive British sporting icon from Victorian times.

e) My husband was born and brought up in Leicester. He’s a director of the business and a huge Leicester fan.

f) Gary Lineker in my pants.

g) Also, and this is a little thing, but you know I said my kid was disabled, well she has a condition called Williams Syndrome and it’s dead rare. Recently Gary Lineker was tweeting about it to raise awareness.

“If I was talking to me sobbing on the floor of my hallway when I received the letter saying my kid would need lifelong care, after I’d given me a hug and poured me a gin, I’d have told me that my life was going to be hard, but that nothing was worse than this moment.”

Can you imagine how much I was screaming at my iPhone? ”For the love of all that is holy. You said you’d wear pants to present the first Match of the Day next season. I jacked in my nightwear and underwear buying job to care for my kid and I set up an underpants business. They’re made in the Midlands. My husband supports Leicester and now you’re tweeting about my kid’s disability which nobody has ever heard of.

“For the sake of the holy mother of all fit arses you have to wear my pants on Match of the Day and I’ll even unpick the label at the front myself so that the BBC don’t lose their shit about advertising. I just need Lineker IN MY PANTS.”

Just that really, Susan.

SH: Got it. What are the difficulties you face because of Martha having Williams Syndrome?

DP: Williams Syndrome is basically a deletion from chromosome 7. She has learning difficulties and medical problems. We have to watch her blood pressure daily. She can’t be left alone because she wanders off. She doesn’t really sleep at night and needs an awful lot of medication to help with that.

She asks everyone loads of questions and doesn’t listen to any of the answers then asks all her questions again. She has obsessions. She needs help with hygiene. She needs help with walking over bumpy surfaces. She needs help going down stairs. She can’t concentrate on anything for more than a minute. She has huge meltdowns in public and she can’t help it. She has lots of medical issues. She has a lot of autistic traits, too.

SH: And the rewards?

DP: She’s AMAZING! She’s got a very sunny personality and she’s the light of our entire town – she’s like a mini celeb because everyone knows her. She’s taught us more than anyone in the world because we laugh more, we cry more, we feel more.

It’s not easy, but if I was talking to me sobbing on the floor of my hallway eight years ago when I received the letter saying my kid would need lifelong care, after I’d given me a hug and poured me a gin, I’d have told me that my life was going to be hard, but that nothing was worse than this moment and that, because of this moment, I was going to become fearless. That’s the metaphor which runs through british-boxers.com.

SH: Is Martha’s condition something that has brought you closer together as a family?

DP: Most definitely. I think it can push you to the absolute limit of what’s possible. It can make relationships strained and I can see how it can make some break down. We grew stronger though; my husband Darren and I just totally trust each other. We’ll fight like cat and dog about the mundane – dirty tea cups or what’s on telly – but when the big stuff comes in we just close ranks and work like a solid team.

“I’ve even spoken to Gary Lineker’s agent who said, ‘Please don’t send me more pants. My entire office is inundated with pants.’ He should see mine!”

I’ve talked about my pants and why I set up the business, but Darren did something amazing too. I wanted to make sure Martha’s future was financially secure when we’re no longer here; Darren was deeply concerned about many other kids and families in similar circumstances and so he stood for Parliament last year. He’s an amazing man!

I don’t want to bore on about politics but I’ll say this: they’re not all duck-house purchasing, expense-swindling, money-grabbing arses. It’s reassuring that there are still people like him seeking election for the right reasons. He’s brilliant. I admire his passion for it and he admires my business ambition.

SH: What have you done so far to create awareness of your Match of the Day mission?

DP: We’ve done lots of newspaper interviews, I’ve been on the radio a few times, we’ve tweeted Gary. We’ve had friends literally handing out press releases to the editor of Match of The Day.

We’ve had cameramen, producers, so many people who’ve seen our social media campaign who have put in good words for us. I’ve even spoken to Gary Lineker’s agent who said, “Please don’t send me more pants. My entire office is inundated with pants.” *snorts* He should see mine! Nobody’s office is more inundated with pants than mine. Well, maybe Mr Klein’s might be. *spits into spitoon*

SH: OK, you’re face to face with Lineker; what do you say to persuade him?

DP: I’d probably go really red and say something rude about being in my pants, which I’d later regret. And I’d probably get the words in the wrong order, then stand there grinning like a loon hoping he didn’t think I was a massive tit.

In my head I’d undoubtedly be thinking things like, “Would it be inappropriate to ask for a selfie?”; “Does he actually like Walkers crisps or is he more of a Kettle Chip kind of man?” And, “What’s for tea?”


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Written by Susan Hanks

Presenter on Moorlands Radio 103.7FM Drive Time, weekdays 4-7pm. Join Susan in 'shaking what ya mamma gave ya' for the daily Derriere Dance. Rhythm/leotard not essential.