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Bideford forward Sean Downing honoured by South West selection

By NDJMark  |  Posted: October 14, 2013

Sean Downing

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Sean Downing is honoured to be representing the FA on a special occasion at Newton Abbot on Wednesday. 

The Bideford forward is part of South West representative squad playing on behalf of the FA against a Devon select XI. 

He could line up against Bideford team-mates in a match to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Devon FA. 

The South West team has been selected by Craig Laird, the Weston-super-Mare manager, and will be watched by Paul Fairclough, the England C team manager.

England C – previously known as the England non-League team – usually rely on players from the Skrill Premier but those who impress on Wednesday will put themselves in contention for a place. 

Downing has impressed this season after helping Bideford make an unbeaten start in the Calor League.He will be joined in the South West squad by players from Weston-super-Mare, Yate Town and Salisbury City. 

Downing was told he had been selected by Bideford manager Sean Joyce ahead of last week's match against Plymouth Argyle in the Devon St Luke's Cup.

"Joycey came up to me in the warm-up and had a word," said Downing. 

"I thought he was pulling my leg. It just came out of the blue. "He said Craig Laird was going to be managing the South West representative team and he'd like me to play. At the time I was absolutely buzzing for it, I was really excited but I didn't really have too many details. A couple of days ago I got a letter through from the FA. It's a massive honour."  

Downing's club-mates Owen Howe, Kevin Squire and Ian Sampson are part of Pete Buckingham's Devon squad.

"If all four of us were to play, it would be a massive achievement for Bideford," said Downing. 

"It's a bit of a shop window. A chance to put yourself out there for the England C team." 

The match at Coach Road, Newton Abbot, kicks off at 7.45pm.

The players involved are unlikely to play a full part in Bideford's Red Insure Cup tie at home to Taunton Town tomorrow.

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