ENGLAND and Liverpool striker Michael Owen had hoped to support a charity football match in Chester but a hamstring injury meant he was on a hospital trolley instead.
Owen's dad Terry announced over the public address system that his son would love to have been at the event at Boughton Hall cricket ground but was having an X-ray.
Mr Owen senior, of Hawarden, attended the Emlyn Hughes' All Stars versus Chester Nomads' Veterans game along with about 1,000 paying spectators.
The match, which was drawn 7-7, should raise more than £8,000 towards the Countess of Chester Hospital's £1m appeal for a new breast cancer unit.
It was kicked off by England and Liverpool striker Danny Murphy, a Cestrian who went to Kingsway High School.
Emlyn Hughes' All Stars included the former England and Liverpool striker himself and his ex-team mate Dave Johnson plus Brookside's Steve Fletcher (Steve Murray), former Emmerdale actors Tony Pitts (Archie Brooks) and the injured Rob Beck (Gavin Ferris), Paul Hendy from ITV's Don't Try This at Home, Kelly George from Grange Hill, Ian St John Junior, Tranmere coach Eric Nixon and comedian John Bishop.
Nick Pickard, who plays Hollyoaks' Tony Hutchinson, was unable to play on the day but was involved in a fundraising raffle the night before at the Oaklands Hotel, Hoole, which raised £3,000.
The raffle was drawn by Emlyn on Saturday night. First prize, donated by Elegant Resorts in Chester, was three nights in Estepona, Spain. It was won by Jane Gilmour of Bromborough, Wirral.
Second prize of a round of golf for four at Portal Golf Club, Tarporley, was won by Geri Mitchell of Chester; and third prize of a signed Liverpool FC Football was won by Mrs Harvey of Sandycroft, Deeside.
The other prizes, and who won them were, in descending order: A signed Michael Owen shirt by Dave Connor of Northwich; portrait sitting with print from Gary Talbot Photography in Chester by Mrs S Clark of Chester; cosmetics pack by Rob Harris of Salisbury; bottle of sherry by Mr R Paddy of Lache; bottle of Irish Velvet by Diana Ormandy of Chester; book token for £20 by DL Jenner of Chester; knitted toy by Sue Elphick of Chester; bottle of sherry by Mr Coyle of Chester; Cosmopolitan Quiz Book by Jane Roberts of Broughton; £10 Safeway voucher by Andrew McArthur of North Allerton; bottle of port by Anne Marsh of Wrexham; and meal for two at the Pied Bull in Chester by April Roxborough of Saltney.
Meanwhile, local heroes in the match included former Chester City FC players Eddie Bishop and John Kelly, who manages the All Stars.
Joining the Nomads' Veterans team were former Liverpool legends Ian Rush, Alan Kennedy and Phil Neal along with ex-Chester City FC player Bob Delgado. John Kelly, who organises charity matches for the Emlyn Hughes' All Stars every month, said: 'It was a great success. The whole weekend was a success. People turned up the night before and for the match. Because people enjoyed it so much we would like to hold it every year but may be for a different charity next time.'
* The Countess Breast Care Appeal was launched in May 2000. All money raised from the appeal will be used to upgrade facilities and purchase additional equipment for the screening and diagnosis of breast cancer.
Early detection can provide patients with a good chance of a successful recovery. The current appeal total stands at £420,000.