‘Make footballers prove they are injured!’

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After leading his Thame hockey team to the league title, Gareth Birkett took time out to answer our quick-fire questions

What’s your earliest memory?

I suspect it must be just after midnight. I confess on occasion this period is not well remembered but that would certainly be the earliest.

What do you wish they’d taught you at school, but didn’t?

Apparition – this would reduce carbon emissions, road rage and free up the highways for haulage benefiting the economy, this should be looked into immediately.

If you could pass one new law tomorrow, what would it be and why?

I would make it a legal requirement for all footballers to prove they were in as much pain as perceived by a jury from their reaction to a tackle. Penalty for accentuating an injury is a ban from all hair product for a month.

You can invite three people – living or dead, from any period – round for dinner. Who are they and why?

Oscar Wilde, Winston Churchill and Angelina Jolie – primarily to look at and she would provide a lot of material for the rest of us to have a good laugh about, I am sure.

If you could have any super power, what would it be and why?

Invisibility, I think it provides the greatest scope for practical jokes.

How do you relax?

I like to play any sort of sport – there’s nothing better than some physical exertion and good banter to help you relax.

What’s your greatest fear?

I think it is probably people with clipboards.

When they come close I get a palpable rise in heart rate, I sweat and have an irresistible temptation to run – they have an unnerving ability to track you no matter what route you take down a street and an unnerving immovable smile.

I am actually scaring myself just thinking about it.

If you had to give up something tomorrow, what would you find it hardest to live without?

Probably cheese – saturated fat at its absolute best.

What’s the most important lesson that life has taught you so far?

Not to take life too seriously, having fun is the most important aspect of life; I am certainly not one for living for the sake of existence.

What’s your best kept entertainment or social life secret, or guilty pleasure?

Radio 4 comedy, whenever I mention it to somebody they look at me sideways and think that I am 20 years older than I am.

Always leave them laughing – so please tell us a joke

What would men be without women? Scarce.