Even though they lost to Exeter Chiefs on the day, Harlequins made their newest fan’s birthday one to remember when he won tickets to the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final on May 30.
Young Dexter Garlick, who turns seven on Sunday, was taken to the Twickenham Stoop last weekend by dad Rob, 44, and beat all challengers to be named winner of the ‘Grab a Ticket’ competition.
In an inflatable dome outside the ground before the game, Dexter, who lives in Cranleigh, caught more paper tickets in 30 seconds than anyone else.
And Rob revealed his son is no stranger to punching above his weight – or rather his age.
“We went for a tournament in the morning and did that outside the ground at Quins,” he said.
“He was pleased as punch to win. He was a six-year-old playing with a group of 11-year-olds, who all tried the challenge as well, so he was just very pleased to beat them.”
The 'Grab a Ticket' machine has already travelled to London Welsh, London Irish and Harlequins and will head to the other nine Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs in the coming weeks – with Leicester Tigers next up on Saturday. The challenge is to catch as many tickets as possible in 30 seconds as they are blown around at high speed.
It was the perfect early birthday present for Dexter, although his dad thinks it’s not all the Peaslake Free School student wants to celebrate the day.
Dexter had so much fun on Saturday that he’s now sworn allegiance to Quins, and he wants nothing more than a replica shirt when he celebrates his big day this weekend.
“It is his birthday on Sunday and he came home and said that what he wanted was a Quins shirt so he is their newest fan,” said dad. “There’s a bit of brand loyalty there!”
And then there is the small matter of Dexter’s ‘Grab a Ticket’ prize – on May 30 he’ll be hopping over the road to take in English rugby’s showpiece event at Rugby HQ.
And though there is competition for the honour of being Dexter’s plus-one, dad is confident of securing the extra ticket.
“It would be foolish of me to let him go on his own and I can’t take his brother – that would be unfair – so I’ll be going with him,” added a relieved Rob.
Tickets for the Aviva Premiership Rugby final are on sale. Click here to snap one up: premiershiprugby.com/final