by Robert Lee · 05/12/2022
Last month's game at Avro was Lee Gavin's 140th appearance for West, but it will be his last for a while as he takes time out to travel the world.
Now the club's longest-serving player, Lee shook off occasional injury problems to become the beating heart of the West midfield and a cult hero for supporters of all vintages. Last season was arguably his best, as he made 36 appearances in our NWCFL First Division South championship campaign - including a peerless display against Atherton Collieries in the Lancashire Challenge Trophy semi-final.
Manager Chris Rowley paid tribute to his temporarily-departing midfielder:
“As many of you will know - Gav has made the decision to go travelling while he still can, so we bid farewell (for now) to a real West legend.
“Gav is the last of what I would describe as 'the unknowns' from when I joined West as manager. AJ, Cookie and CJ were with me at Altrincham so I knew them when I took over, but I have got to know Gav over my time here. He has been a total professional since I arrived, leading by example, outrunning the younger lads during lockdown and putting in some unbelievable performances on the pitch - even chipping in with the very odd wonder goal!
“Everyone knows what he can offer on the pitch and he has never put in less than 100%, but it may equally be off the pitch where his absence will be felt. He is one of the real characters in the dressing room, often seen doing a little jog to try avoid a fine for being late - and always cutting it very fine.
Gav, you will be missed during your time away from the club - but we all wish you all the best on your travelling adventure. I know you know that we will be here to welcome you back with open arms once you return.”
Everyone at West echoes Chris's thoughts, and we can't wait to see Lee back at Brookburn Road.