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Donnelly: A fitting finale for Shep

Lynda Shepherd has made 255 appearances for the Blues

20 April 2019

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Gemma Donnelly felt Tuesday’s win was the perfect send off for Lynda Shepherd, who is retiring at the end of the campaign.

The 4-0 victory over Huddersfield was Shep’s 255th Rovers appearance - and final at home ground The Sir Tom Finney Stadium.  

“It was a fitting final home game at Bamber Bridge for Shep, for us to score four and not to concede as well, I’m thrilled with that,” Donnelly commented. 

“Shep’s been here a number of seasons and for her to achieve the landmark of 250 appearances for Rovers recently, it speaks volumes about her commitment and determination as a player and an individual.”

The Rovers captain is signing off after more than a decade at the club over two spells. During her time as skipper she has lifted the league trophy three times in a row, as well as the League Cup and the Lancashire Challenge Cup twice. 

Donnelly was full of praise for the 33 year-old. 

“She always strives to be the best player that she can and in the later stages at Rovers, to be an exemplary captain leading from the front in the team that have achieved the most and been the most successful over the years. 

“She brings quality on the pitch but also her work off the pitch to ensure group togetherness and collectively, striving to be successful.” 

Donnelly also applauded the potent strike force of Saffron Jordan and Natasha Flint, who have netted 77 goals between them this season, including two each on Tuesday night.

“They were reunited against Huddersfield. Sophie Charlton has been great in the games she’s played and obviously scored, but Saffron and Tash, you just can’t fault them. 

“They know how to play with each other and the players around them and the quality does prevail. 

“All they need is one chance and they’ll put it in the back of the net. I guess that’s the difference between us and Huddersfield.”

Rovers face Crawley Wasps at the Pirelli Stadium next Sunday in the FAWNL Cup Final, (2pm). 

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