FC Halifax Town: Jared flying in from Australia to see Shaymen at Wembley

Adopted Halifax Town fan Jared Gray wearing his shirt at the wedding reception of his friend Nick McQueen in Rishworth

Adopted Halifax Town fan Jared Gray wearing his shirt at the wedding reception of his friend Nick McQueen in Rishworth

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An adopted FC Halifax Town fan will be travelling from Australia to watch The Shaymen at Wembley.

Jared Gray, who was born in Northland, New Zealand, will embark on a 19,000-mile round trip to see Halifax play Grimsby in the FA Trophy final.

Jared has spent £1,000, the equivalent of $2,000 Australian dollars, on return flights and will be staying in London for three nights.

His association with The Shaymen began when he attended the wedding of his friend Nick McQueen in Rishworth last month.

He said: “I moved to Australia in 2005 when I was 16 to work on Hamilton Island, where I meet Nick.

“I work in the mining accommodation sector in a place called Coppabella in Queensland.

“Nick and I met in 2009 and I then met his now wife Emma when they returned on holiday.

“They invited me to their wedding and I spent four weeks travelling around the country when I came over for that.

“One thing on my to-do list was to see a football match so Nick took me to see Manchester United v Aston Villa, but the atmosphere was disappointing.

“So Nick said he’d take me to a proper match at The Shay.

“They played Eastleigh and it was tremendous fun, and much cheaper!

“The local supporters were what made it, they had a drummer and they were chanting and singing”

At Nick and Emma’s wedding reception, Jared was presented with a Halifax shirt, which he wore for the rest of the day.

“I was also informed that my adopted team were soon to be playing their first ever match at Wembley in the FA Trophy final,” Jared added.

“Excited by the prospect, a few days after I arrived back in Australia, I booked return flights to the UK so that I could make the big game.

“I am staying in London for three nights and think it will be worth every penny.

“I am really looking forward to the game as not only is this a historic day for the club, I have the opportunity to support the Shaymen at England’s national stadium with a group of friends I made during my time in the UK.

“Whether we win or not it will be a great weekend and I should have no problems sleeping on my flight back.”