Belfast Telegraph

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Northern Ireland football player wanted by police scores against PSNI team

Harland and Wolff Welders player Lukasz Gwiazda
Harland and Wolff Welders player Lukasz Gwiazda

A footballer who was reported to be wanted by police over a court no-show scored on Saturday — against the cops.

Polish striker Lukasz Gwiazda banged in the opening goal in the 16th minute for Harland and Wolff Welders in their Bluefin Sport Championship clash with the PSNI’s team.

But only days earlier, a warrant was issued for the former Glentoran player’s arrest after he failed to turn up for a court appearance in Newtownards.

The 24-year-old was due at Ards Magistrates Court on a series of motoring charges.

Gwiazda, from Dufferin Avenue, Bangor, was accused of driving while disqualified and driving without insurance or an MOT certificate.

When he failed to turn up, District Judge Mark Hamill ordered a warrant for his arrest, according to a report in the Co Down Spectator.

It is not known if coppers felt Gwiazda’s collar ahead of yesterday’s match, or, if he handed himself in at his local police station.

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But yesterday, the PSNI couldn’t lay a hand on the big striker as he stroked in the first goal of the game in a hard-fought draw at Tillysburn Park in east Belfast.

Lukasz Gwiazda began his Irish League career in January 2017 with Bangor where despite some impressive displays, he couldn’t prevent the club from being relegated from the Premier Intermediate League.

In January this year, then Glentoran manager Gary Smyth brought the Polish forward into the team from his former club H&W Welders.

Smyth had previously snapped up the former Sokol Ostroda player for the Welders in the summer of 2017.

“I signed Lukasz for the Welders at the start of last season and he did very well for me,” he told the Glentoran website.

“We signed him as a central midfielder where he was doing well then when we had an injury crisis, we moved him up front and he was also a success there.”

Smyth described Gwiazda as a strong, tall player with an outstanding work-rate.

The Polish player is now back enjoying his football at the Welders — and on Saturday he was on target in his team’s 2-2 draw with the PSNI.

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