A minute’s silence was observed prior to the kick-off of Saturday’s King Cup tie between Coldstream and Duns as a mark of respect to Ian ‘Frenchie’ Clark who sadly passed away last week after losing his battle with cancer.
Frenchie was known throughout Borders footballing circles having played for Berwick Rangers as well as East of Scotland League sides Coldstream, Hawick Royal Albert and Kelso United over the years,
He started his footballing with Duns Amateurs before Jim McLean, then manager of East of Scotland side Coldstream, signed him up as a 17-year-old.
After several seasons at Home Park Frenchie caught the eye of Berwick Rangers and was signed by them under manager Frank Connor.
Following his spell at Berwick he returned to Coldstream, winning the King Cup with them and reaching the final of the Scottish Qualifying Cup, before moving with manager Jim McLean to Hawick Royal Albert.
He later played for Kelso United and Gala Fairydean before returning to Duns where he won multiple league titles and the coveted South of Scotland Amateur Cup, both as a player and as a manager.
Not only was he later a coach and manager of the senior side at Duns but he also coached the junior age group teams which have produced many of those playing in the Border Amateur and East of Scotland Leagues today.
Jim McLean said: “Frenchie was one of the best players I ever had in my teams. He is definitely up there as one of the best five players I have ever worked with.
“He was dedicated, always turned up for training and worked hard. He had two great feet and was superb in the air with a cracking shot.”
Davie Watkins, who was Frenchie’s manager at Gala added: “Frenchie was a person everybody liked and maybe he should have gone further in football than he did. He was a great player.”
One of Frenchie’s career highlights came after winning the Berwick Charities Cup at The Stanks when he received the man of the match award from Sir Jackie Milburn.
Our sympathies go out to his family and he will be sadly missed by all his many friends in Borders footballing circles.