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1D star Tomlinson to donate Doncaster Rovers design prize back to club

Published 06/04/2016

Louis Tomlinson won a competition to design the away shirt of his home-town football club Doncaster Rovers
Louis Tomlinson won a competition to design the away shirt of his home-town football club Doncaster Rovers

Louis Tomlinson's grandfather has pledged that the One Direction star will donate the prize he won for designing a new Doncaster Rovers football shirt back to the club.

The singer and new father won a competition by his home-town football club to design the new away shirt after the final decision was put to the public in an online poll.

But the announcement was slammed by fans who questioned whether his win was a publicity stunt.

The club insisted that the voting process was fair and legal and now it has been revealed by his grandfather on BBC Radio 5 live's Phil Williams programme that Tomlinson, 24, will not accept the prize - a holiday to Thailand and the chance to see the first shirts being made.

Len Poulston said: "I can assure you it certainly wasn't (fixed)."

Tomlinson, he said, "was never having the prize himself anyway. He's going to put it back into an auction or whatever, so one of the fans will win".

He said he did not see his grandson that often but it was on an occasion when Tomlinson had visited for dinner and that Mr Poulston had "probably" had some wine that they began talking about the away kit design and pulled out a pen and paper.

He said the pair had looked at continental strips which he described as "more flash" and said laughing: "We thought we'd jazz it up a bit and we sent it in and won it."

After the club - for whose reserve team Tomlinson made a well-publicised professional debut in 2014 - announced on Monday that the One Direction singer had won, fans took to Twitter to complain.

Thomas Bailey wrote: "Lad from One Direction wins a competition to design the Doncaster away kit. Definitely not an attempt at improving shirt sales..."

"You kidding me, the away shirt was coincidently designed by Louis Tomlinson and it coincidently won?! Awful, just awful!!!!!," Twitter user Jake Laughton wrote.

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