West Ham's very special guest

Alex Best is the envy of his football mates

TONY BIRD
Last updated 05:00 23/07/2014
Alex Best
CHARLOTTE CURD/ Fairfax NZ
LOYAL HAMMERS FAN: New Plymouth teen Alex Best is a fanatic West Ham United football fan and off to Auckland where he will get to meet his idols face to face.

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Alex Best never had a choice.

As a baby he was kitted out in West Ham stretch-and-grows by his Hammer-loving dad, Kevin.

Today the 14-year-old is a walking West Ham billboard.

Best senior - no relation to former West Ham favourite Clyde - made sure the Hammers never had a choice either.

When he realised his beloved club was coming to New Zealand, he secured the internet domain westham.co.nz.

Then he suggested to the club that, to avoid seeing the domain sold off to a Millwall or Spurs fan, it would be a good idea if his son, accompanied by an adult, got to meet the team.

Today Alex Best is the envy of his football mates. The 14-year-old Francis Douglas Memorial College year 10 pupil and his dad headed to Auckland yesterday to be special guests of the Hammers.

The English premier league giants are in New Zealand to play a match against A-league side Wellington Phoenix at Eden Park in Auckland tonight and before flying down to Wellington to play Sydney FC.

Alex and Kevin have been invited to attend a closed training session of the London based football club at the North Harbour Stadium and meet the team this afternoon. Then it will be a short dash across town where Alex and his father will take up prime seats for tonight's match.

Kevin was shocked to receive a prompt reply to his letter.

"It said there was no need for a ransom and arrangements would be made for Alex to meet the team.

"I was blown away by the response," Kevin said. "I expected no reply, as they must get millions of requests all the time."

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