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October 25, 2012
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Bibi vs Boyz

Ricardo 'Bibi' Gardner

Former Bolton player looks to organise testimonial against Jamaica 11

Former Reggae Boy captain Ricardo 'Bibi' Gardner is in the process of organising a testimonial match against a Jamaica XI, but admits that a date for the fixture may not be finalised any time soon.

The 34-year-old player recently called time on a 14-year career with English League Championship team Bolton Wanderers, a journey which began soon after Jamaica's historic appearance at the 1998 World Cup in France.

"I haven't got a time in mind," Gardner told The Bolton News.

"The club have agreed and it is about waiting for the right opportunity now."

honoured picks

A testimonial is the practice in football, especially in the United Kingdom, of putting on a match in honour of a player for service to the club. The player being honoured picks the team that the club will play against and is also entitled to a large portion of the gate receipts. Gardner, who made some 413 appearances for Bolton Wanderers, joined the Trotters as an 18-year-old from local Premier League outfit Harbour View for a then record transfer fee of £1m.

promotion bid

The player, who settled right into the squad at the left back position, went on to be a crucial part of the Bolton Wanderers' successful promotion bid in the 2000-2001 season. However, plagued throughout by various injuries, Gardner found himself struggling to get playing time in his final few seasons, and was sent on loan to Preston North End last season, after recovering from his latest injury setback. With his contract expiring this summer, Gardner was not resigned by Bolton. The player, however, has pleasant memories at the club where he was the second longest serving foreign player, second only to goalkeeper Jussi Jääskeläinen.

"I have had some great memories at this club in the last 14 years," Gardner said.

"Since the day I got here; and right up until now, I have been made welcome in the town."

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