Diary of hat-trick hero Tomi…aged 65!

Deep down I knew it…that those of us who played indoor football for a few memorable years in the Convent Gym in Roscommon hung up our runners/trainers much too early.

We of little faith (in our durability) might – even now – take inspiration from a Mr. Tomi Morgan.

Tomi was a semi-professional footballer in the Welsh League for many years. Many, many years, it would appear (he later went into management).

He always had an eye for goal, scoring freely with Aberystwyth Town over the years. The bould Tomi showed Mickey Linden/Stanley Matthews-like longevity by playing up to 2010, at which point he finally retired, aged 53.

This week, came an unexpected and remarkable postscript. Now a coach with Welsh side Penparcau, Tomi attended a cup game against Welshpool reserves. With Penparcau short a number of players, Morgan, now aged 65, was listed amongst the subs. When their goalkeeper got injured, and with his team 6-0 ahead, he got the call to come on.

It gets better. With his team totally dominant, chances came quickly. Three of them fell to the 65-year-old sub, and he put all three away. A hat-trick in eleven minutes!

Morgan told BBC Sport: “It was a bit of a surprise for myself to be honest (being put on). My first thoughts were not to get injured and to keep out of trouble because we were coasting to victory at half-time anyway…we were on top and creating chances. Fortunately a few dropped for me in the six-yard box and I managed to put them away”.

Tomi had great fun with the rest of the team afterwards, having often told them that he was a prolific goalscorer in his prime (which I reckon was in the late 1970s/early ‘80s).

As an aside, James Callaghan was Prime Minister when Tomi was in his prime, and the Margaret Thatcher era was only starting.

Anyways, his hat-trick as a 65-year-old – irrespective of how relatively humble the league in question may be – will surely have a few veterans thinking. There may even be a few Roscommon GAA/soccer/Creggs Rugby legends who will have a rethink this weekend!

Beat that, Erling Haaland!