Chris Lawton Testimonial: Sunday, June 3
The former Great Britain defensive back has played for a decade with the Rams, along the way setting a club record for interceptions in a season with 12 in the 2014 campaign.
He remains a key presence in the secondary, winning our Ram of the Day award in the first two games of this season and inspiring the next generation of defensive backs such as 2017 Rookie of the Year Tyler Broad.
Asked to reflect on his favourite memories in black and gold, Lawton admitted: “I can’t really remember most of them now, unless I sat down and wrote them down.
“I don’t think I’ll ever get back to where I used to be, the GB camps and so on, but Tyler’s still not beaten my interception record – 12 in an eight-game season – so that’s alright!”
Rams general manager and joint defensive co-ordinator Adam Cowley, himself a stand-out presence on defence until his retirement at the end of last season, was quick to pay tribute to a player who was nominated by his team-mates as a team captain for this summer.
“He’s part of the face of the club, isn’t he?” said Cowley.
“I saw the defensive captain votes and he won it by a country mile, so that just shows his impact. He’s one of the foundations of the team.”
Few know Lawton better than long-time team-mate and close friend Spencer Whybrow, and the wide receiver said: “He’s one of the few guys still around that’s been playing as long as I have.
“We’ve had a lot of good times going against each other in training and it keeps it fun and interesting – always the first ones to call each other out when there’s drills to go hard on!”
While Lawton himself insists “I don’t really care about myself any more”, the club were determined to pay tribute – as Cowley explained.
“He’s got to have something, hardly anyone has a career like that, 10 years with one club – not many clubs are going that long!” he said.
“We’ve got people coming who’ve played with him 10 years ago, we’ve got people coming up from London, Bristol, Birmingham, so it just goes to show.”
We look forward to welcoming those familiar faces to John Charles Stadium on Sunday – and we hope you can join them for a game which could prove important in the Rams’ bid for promotion.
Kick-off is at 2.30pm. Entry costs £5, with under-16s admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.