"It would be awesome if the football community could come out in force for the Stirling – Glory game on Wednesday night and raise some money for a fantastic cause."
That's the heartfelt message from well-known State League goalkeeper and former Glory triallist Cory Hugo who is hoping that the pre-season clash at Macedonia Park will provide a cash boost for Princess Margaret Hospital where his 2-year-old son James has been receiving treatment for a brain tumour.
"James had been sick since August or September of last year," he explained, "and then in April of this year he was diagnosed with a brain tumour. "Once we found out that he had the tumour we went to PMH where the neurosurgeon, Sharon Lee, performed the operation to take it out. "We spent three weeks at the hospital having the operation and the follow-up treatment and then he got an infection so we were there for another couple of weeks, making five all up. "The neuro team were on call 24-7 for whatever we needed. "We were on Ward 5A which is the neuro ward and the staff were just amazing. "Because James was so little and had a drain in his head, he wasn't allowed to move so he had to have someone with him all the time. "That was me most of the time, but whenever I needed to go to the toilet, or to have a shower or something to eat or whatever, one of the staff would sit with him and make sure he was ok."
Fortunately, James is now well on the road to recovery and Hugo is hopeful that the brave youngster will be able to attend Wednesday night's game.
"We are doing three-month MRI scans at the moment," he said, "and we've just had the first all-clear to show that the cancer's not coming back. "We've got to keep those going now for the next few years, but at the moment he's just being a regular 2-year-old boy, eating everything and running amuck! "The plan is for him to be at the game along with my wife and other two kids and our extended family. "Hopefully he can come out onto the pitch with the teams or bring the balls out or something like that. "It should be a great occasion and I'm hoping we can raise a few thousand bucks for PMH on the night. "I think $1000 has already been raised by the club and its sponsors and I've organised a walk-around collection at the game for the PMH Foundation."
And while Hugo is keen to focus attention upon the fund-raising aspect of the friendly clash, it will also serve as something of a farewell tribute night for the 40-year-old who represented the Lions and several other State League clubs with distinction and also trained extensively with Glory during the days of the old NSL.
"I'm playing one more game for Swan in the First Division," he said, "and then I'm hanging up my boots. "I've already retired twice, but I'm just helping Swan out at the moment because their regular 'keeper is injured. "I played for Stirling for a couple of years and I was doing pre-season with them earlier this year when my son was crook. "(Stirling coach) Dougie Hesketh was always keen for me to have one last game with them and when this game against Glory came about, he thought it would be a good idea to have a farewell for me and use it as an opportunity to raise some money as well. "In terms of my links with Glory, I trained with Glory in 1998 and then again in 2001 when Bernd Stange was in charge. "They were keen for me to come down and see if I could earn myself a gig, but it never quite happened. "I played a pre-season game against Parramatta Power and that was as close as I got to playing for them, although I did play against them a few times for the WA State Team."
Stirling Lions v Perth Glory Macedonia Park Wednesday 4th September 2013 Kick-off: 7pm Admission: $10 Adults $5 Pensioners, Child and Student concessions