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Prostate Cancer UK: John Lloyd - “I'm determined to spread the message”

7 September 2017

Former Great Britain tennis number one and current BBC pundit John Lloyd is a supporter of Prostate Cancer UK after being diagnosed with the disease early last year.

The 62-year-old, who had successful surgery, spoke about his prostate cancer journey and is keen to hammer home the dangers of the disease.

“I’m determined to spread the message," he explained. "I’m proud to say the 'Man of Men' pin badge will now be a regular part of my wardrobe.

“Since telling my story I’ve had people come up to me, people from the public at Wimbledon, saying they are going to get check-ups now. I consider it a bonus even if just one person does.

“It’s one of those things where, to be quite frank, you never think it will happen to you. You just get very blasé about your health when you are in good shape. You don’t think about it. People need to be aware that someone who is in good shape, an athlete with no symptoms, can get prostate cancer.

“If you are over 50, get a check-up or talk to your doctor. Men are a bit private about that sort of stuff and going to the doctors. We are sort of wimps to be honest; I’m the biggest wimp of all. Particularly when you think about areas ‘there’ – it’s not something you particularly want to think about.

“So what you do is you block it off, you put it away, you think ‘that can’t happen to me’. You don’t bother. Well, guess what, you have to bother. It is one of the most curable cancers around if you get it early and you can have a normal life afterwards. I’m extremely lucky that everything has worked out well for me.”

It's not just tennis that is one of John's passions. A Wolverhampton Wanderers fan of 54 years, he's on board with the new owners and the positivity currently surrounding the club.

Just one defeat from five games in August, a month which included wins against well-fancied clubs such as Middlesbrough, Hull City and Derby County, sees the men from Molineux fourth in the Sky Bet Championship, and John fancies them to improve even further,

“I’ve followed Wolves since I was eight years old," recalled Lloyd. "I love the team; I’ve loved them through the high points and quite a few low ones, to be honest. Now they have new owners and I like what I’m seeing. With some British players in there for a bit of steel, combined with the flair of the players that we seem to be signing, I’m backing us for promotion this season.

“You talk about competition, the Premier League is one thing but the Championship is a great league, the toughest one to get out of, probably in the world, but I think the Wolves boys can make it this year.

“The reason I supported Wolves is rather silly, actually. All my friends supported the Liverpools, Arsenals, Manchester Uniteds, but I liked the gold kits. I don’t know why, but I did, and I’ve been in love with them ever since. I stay with them no matter what.

“In California and Florida, it means getting up very early to listen to them on the computer, and if I was lucky enough to go to Molineux, then the late great Rachael Heyhoe Flint, who was a friend of mine, used to get me some good tickets and I love it.

"I’m very passionate about Wolves and this year I’ll be able to watch fixtures on the computer and get pictures for the first time. I shall be watching every single game no matter where the heck I am or what time it is!”

And on the back of the gold kits that John loves, proudly sits Prostate Cancer UK's 'Man of Men' badge, incorporated into the squad numbers of every player, of every team, in the EFL.

“How tremendous that all the players in the EFL can wear this tremendous badge with pride and help raise awareness of prostate cancer,” he added. “The publicity you get from football players is second to none and its absolutely fantastic that everyone is supporting this great cause.”

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