Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Sporting Chance rehab clinic co-founder Peter Kay dies

Peter Kay Image copyright Sporting Chance Clinic
Image caption Peter Kay mentored celebrity sports people, including Joey Barton

The co-founder of an alcohol, drug and gambling rehab clinic for professional and amateur sports people has died.

Peter Kay set up the Sporting Chance Clinic, in Liphook, Hampshire, with former Arsenal and England football captain Tony Adams, in 2000.

Footballers Paul Gascoigne, Paul Merson and Joey Barton were among the stars the 52-year-old mentored.

The Professional Footballers' Association said it was "shocked and devastated" by the "tragic news".

'Energetic and inspirational'

Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the PFA, added: "As one of the founders of the Sporting Chance Clinic he has helped countless numbers of our members deal with personal problems and get their lives back on track.

"He was a great carer and now we pray he will be similarly cared for by the One Great Carer."

In a statement the clinic described Mr Kay as an "energetic and inspirational" chief executive.

He had stepped down from the role 18 months ago "to look after his health", it said.

Mr Adams said: "Peter was my friend as well as a professional colleague and I am saddened by this news.

"He played a major role in changing perceptions and lives along with helping the charity become what it is today."

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