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Lad Who Gave Up Euro 2020 Semi-Final Ticket To Donate Stem Cells Given Final Tickets

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Lad Who Gave Up Euro 2020 Semi-Final Ticket To Donate Stem Cells Given Final Tickets

A lad who gave up the opportunity to watch England's Euro 2020 semi-final with Denmark so that he could save lives, has been given tickets to the final.

Sam Astley, from Dudley, West Midlands, had planned to go to last night's historic match at Wembley after his girlfriend Beth Hill won a pair of tickets.

However, after being informed that he was a match for someone waiting for a donor on the Anthony Nolan stem cell register, the 24-year-old decided not to go.

And he had no regrets at all.

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Speaking at the time, he said: "Life is more important than a football game at the end of the day.

"No football game beats saving someone's life."

Sam Astley gave up his ticket to the Euro 2020 semi-final so that he could save lives. Credit: SWNS
Sam Astley gave up his ticket to the Euro 2020 semi-final so that he could save lives. Credit: SWNS

And if that wasn't enough, Sam is also set to donate a litre of bone marrow this week.

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He added: "Somebody's waiting for the donation but we're not sure which part of the world they're from."

But following a social media plea for someone to help Sam and Beth get tickets for Sunday's final, including a shout-out from ex-England striker Gary Lineker, the couple's dream is now coming true.

Official Euro 2020 sponsor Vivo Europe said it couldn't sit back and let Sam miss out on the final after having done so much for other people, and has now invited them both to watch the game.

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A spokesperson for the company said: "We saw the coverage on social media earlier today that Sam had missed the chance to attend the England Denmark game after being matched to someone in need via the Anthony Nolan stem cell register, and agreeing to make a life-saving donation to a patient with blood cancer or a blood disorder.

He will now get to see Harry Kane and the boys take on Italy at Wembley in this weekend's final. Credit: SWNS
He will now get to see Harry Kane and the boys take on Italy at Wembley in this weekend's final. Credit: SWNS

"As an official sponsor we wanted thank him for his selfless lifesaving donation, so have arranged for Sam and his girlfriend to attend the final England vs Italy match this Sunday at Wembley as guest of Vivo.

"We hope that both of them enjoy the experience."

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Sam signed up to the register at a memorial football match that had been organised in memory of Olly Wilkes, who took his own life at the age of just 22.

Olly's father Simon Wilkes suffers from a blood disorder and has been trying to encourage more young people to donate stem cells.

Speaking about Sam's kind gesture, Simon said: "It's a once in a lifetime thing to win that.

"It's wonderful what he's going to do. He was already sacrificing work time and now he's sacrificing the chance of a lifetime."

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The 24-year-oldsaid he wouldn't change missing the game to help another person in need. Credit: SWNS
The 24-year-oldsaid he wouldn't change missing the game to help another person in need. Credit: SWNS

Rebecca Pritchard, director of register development at the Anthony Nolan charity, called Sam a 'hero'.

"Sam has done an extraordinary and incredibly selfless thing by putting the needs of his recipient, above his own pleasure," she said.

"What a hero. By doing this he's giving someone with blood cancer or a blood disorder their best chance at survival and we cannot thank him enough.

"Every person who, like Sam, joins the register, has the potential to help save someone in desperate need of a lifesaving stem cell transplant."

Anyone interested in signing up to the Anthony Nolan register or finding out more can go online here.

Featured Image Credit: SWNS

Topics: Science, Football, Euro 2020, England, Wembley, Denmark, Health, Italy

Dominic Smithers
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