Wednesday, 23 June 2010

51 Keith Hanvey

Position : Centre half

Played : 1973-4 to 1976-77 ; 1984-5

Appearances : (first spell ) 121 (second spell) 15

Goals : (first spell) 10 (second spell) 0

Joe Cooke’s first defensive partner was Keith, a rare survivor from Dale’s Third Division days who was returning to the club at 32 from Huddersfield Town. Keith started out at Manchester City but didn’t make a League appearance for them before moving to Swansea. He soon returned north to Rochdale to play in the disaster season of 1973-4 and stayed for another two seasons before being sold to Grimsby. After a protracted tussle between the clubs he was sold to Huddersfield in 1977 and formed a successful centre half partnership with a certain Dave Sutton which helped the club win promotion twice in the early 80s. Keith only made 9 appearances in the Second Division and was released at the end of 1983-4.

He looked a bit shaky as Dale made a bad start to the season but was beginning to improve when he injured his groin in the FA Cup First Round tie at home to Doncaster (also notable for the burning of a picture of Arhur Scargill in the Sandy). Already making his mark in business he decided to retire at this point and the club hosted a testimonial game between Huddersfield and a Ron Atkinson XI (featuring Peter Barnes and Peter Beardsley) later in the season. I think that makes Keith currently the last Dale player to receive a testimonial and as they seem to have gone out of fashion in recent years that record will probably stand.

Keith has made a good career for himself in sports event management and hospitality , having spells as commercial manager at Bradford, Leeds and Huddersfield, and now runs his own company Keith Hanvey Associates.

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