This is the kind of story you would read about in a comic strip and perhaps think it is too unbelievable for words. As William Shakespeare once said, “Be not afraid of greatness; some men are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them.”
In the extraordinary case of Ipswich Town`s Noel Hunt I think it is fair to say that the latter applies.
He came to Town largely unknown and unwanted. Even the most optimistic of Town fans had serious doubts. Here was a guy who at almost 32 years of age had underwhelmed for most of his career. His more recent curriculum vitae made depressing reading. Played 22 times for Leeds and had not scored. Acceptable if you are a defender perhaps but certainly not as a striker and furthermore, he had not even made any assists!
According to the Leeds websites I perused they were collectively thankful to have got shut of him and the fact that Ipswich were now prepared to pay his salary until January was the best thing since sliced bread!
I could not fathom it either and suggested the other day that if manager Mick McCarthy proves me wrong on this one then I will happily eat some humble pie. I am still eating it and will continue to, if Noel of the Rovers persists with defying the laws of football logic in such an unlikely fashion!
What happened on Saturday afternoon seems too fanciful to believe. He came on with minutes to spare and his first involvement ended in a bloody nose.
As the game went into the fifth minute of injury time he found himself in space when a David McGoldrick strike fell into his path and his instinctive strike from the edge of the box evaded the keeper and secured Town all three points!
I was left to ponder how unlikely this scenario was and admit that once again Mick McCarthy had proved all his doubters wrong, as Noel Hunt became an instant hero at Ipswich Town football club, catapulting Town to second place in the Sky Bet Championship table!
Frank Weston – Editor Vital Ipswich