This season Prostate Cancer UK is the official charity of The
Football League. To celebrate, we've asked bloggers from each of
the 72 clubs to count down their top five strikers to have worn the
No9 shirt, in recognition of the fact that prostate cancer
affects one in nine men.
Boro marksman: Carl Alford had two super seasons for Stevenage. Photo courtesy of Action Images
Here blogger Pete Hayman, of boroguide.co.uk, selects
Stevenage's five best No9s… and one to forget!
5. Charlie Griffin
Griffin arrived at Stevenage with huge shoes to fill, following
the departure of the prolific Steve Morison. History won't record
Griff as having the same goalscoring impact, but he contributed to
Boro's Conference-winning campaign in 2009-10 with 14 goals in 31
outings to become the club's first player to wear the No9 shirt in
the Football League.
4. Jim Beech
In 1984, Stevenage opted to join the Servowarm League after a mere
four years in the United Counties League. Within two seasons,
promotion to Division One had been achieved, with the goals of Jim
Beech an important factor. A prolific marksman in his own right,
Beech also established formidable partnerships with Kevin Lowe and
3. Gary Crawshaw
After joining in time to help Boro win promotion to the
Conference, Crawshaw was part of the team denied entry to the
Football League in 1996. He does retain the honour of scoring
against Newcastle United at St James' Park. If there had been
goal-line technology, it would have sent the game into extra time.
Because, Mr Shearer, it never crossed the line.
2. Carl Alford
Not the most agile of players, to underestimate Carl Alford's
prowess would be to get it so wrong that Jeremy Paxman would be
unable to patronise you enough. In two seasons, Alford became
arguably the club's greatest marksman since Barry Hayles and forged
a dream partnership with right-back Lee Harvey - enough to forgive
him scoring against Boro for Yeovil in the 2002 FA Trophy
1. Martin Gittings
There's not much we need to say when it comes to Martin Gittings.
During four separate spells, his potency for finding the back of
the net - more than 200 goals in about 400 appearances - keeps him
head and shoulders above the rest in the all-time records list. And
his 44 goals during the 1991-92 season is also a club record. Like
we said: potent.
And the worst…
Boro have had their fair share of less-than-successful strikers
over the years, but not all wore No9. One who did was Tesfaye
Bramble, brother of Titus. He was restricted to just 13 appearances
due to injury, although what he showed in the games he did play
suggests Boro didn't miss out on anything.
Follow Pete on Twitter @BoroGuide