Sussex

Worthing United play first game since Shoreham air crash deaths

Jacob Schilt (left) and Matthew Grimstone Image copyright Worthing Utd FC
Image caption Jacob Schilt (left) and Matthew Grimstone were on their way to a game when the crash happened

Worthing United are to play their first game since two players were killed in the Shoreham air crash.

The FA Vase match against East Preston has been dedicated by the West Sussex club to Matt Grimstone and Jacob Schilt, who were among the 11 who died.

The football match, which kicks off at 17:00 BST, is sold out with 1,000 people buying tickets to pay their respects to the players, both aged 23.

"The first game is going to be tough," said vice chairman Mark Sanderson.

"It is a big game - it is an FA competition against our near neighbours and friends at East Preston so it is massive in many terms."

The match was moved from Saturday to allow as many people as possible connected with football in Sussex to attend.

Mr Sanderson said Worthing were normally used to "less than 100 people and a dog" attending games.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Tributes to the two players were laid at Worthing Uniteds ground in the days following the crash

Mr Grimstone was a groundsman at Brighton and Hove Albion. Ticket sales have been handled by the Championship club, whose ground safety officer Adie Morris has advised on capacity.

Memorial scarves have been printed with Mr Grimstone's and Mr Schilt's names and 2,500 programmes have been produced.

Proceeds will be used to fund a permanent tribute to the players, who were travelling together to a game when the crash happened on 22 August.

"When the players walk up the steps on to the pitch it is gong to be extremely difficult for both sides," said Mr Sanderson.

An initial report into the Shoreham air show disaster said the Hawker Hunter jet showed "no abnormal indications" during its flight.

Andy Hill, the 51-year-old pilot, remains in a serious but stable condition in hospital.

Image copyright EPA
Image caption The Hawker Hunter jet crashed on the A27 during Shoreham air show on 22 August

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