Thursday, December 2News That Matters

Edgbaston to go BLUE for England ODI with Pakistan in memory of Bob Willis, with Bob Dylan a patron

Edgbaston will turn blue on July 13 for the one-day international against Pakistan in memory of former England fast bowler Bob Willis, who died in December 2019 from cancer.

The ‘#BlueForBob’ day will raise money for Prostate Cancer UK, and his widow Lauren Clark said: ‘Hopefully they’ll be allowed to have lots of fans in, they’ll all wear blue, and we’ll raise a lot of money.

‘Prostate cancer is the No 1 diagnosed cancer in the UK now, ahead of breast cancer, but I feel a lot of people don’t know what a prostate is. They certainly don’t think it’s something that can kill you.’

England great Bob Willis passed away in December 2019 after a battle with prostate cancer

England great Bob Willis passed away in December 2019 after a battle with prostate cancer

England great Bob Willis passed away in December 2019 after a battle with prostate cancer

Edgbaston will turn blue on July 13 in memory of Willis when England host Pakistan

Edgbaston will turn blue on July 13 in memory of Willis when England host Pakistan

Edgbaston will turn blue on July 13 in memory of Willis when England host Pakistan 

Clark and David Willis, Bob’s brother, have also launched the Bob Willis Fund, with the aim of raising awareness of the disease and improving its detection and diagnosis.

Its patron is Bob Dylan, the American singer-songwriter who was Willis’s greatest idol. ‘Bob Willis was a great sportsman who left too soon,’ said Dylan. ‘I’m happy to help keep his flame and cause alive.’

#BlueForBob follows a similar initiative in Sydney, which turns pink each year to honour Jane McGrath, former wife of Australian bowler Glenn McGrath, and raise money for breast cancer. 

Lord’s first turned red in 2019 to raise funds for the Ruth Strauss Foundation. Ruth, the wife of former England captain Andrew Strauss, died of a rare form of lung cancer in 2018.

Bob Dylan, Willis's idol, is a patron and said he is 'happy to help keep his flame and cause alive'

Bob Dylan, Willis's idol, is a patron and said he is 'happy to help keep his flame and cause alive'

Bob Dylan, Willis’s idol, is a patron and said he is ‘happy to help keep his flame and cause alive’

Lord's first turned red in August 2019 to raise funds for the Ruth Strauss Foundation

Lord's first turned red in August 2019 to raise funds for the Ruth Strauss Foundation

Lord’s first turned red in August 2019 to raise funds for the Ruth Strauss Foundation