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Harry Wilson's Wales Debut Nets Grandfather the Jackpot

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 15:  Craig Bellamy (R) and Harry Wilson of Wales shake hands after the FIFA 2014 World Cup Qualifying Group A match between Belgium and Wales at King Baudouin Stadium on October 15, 2013 in Brussels, Belgium.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images
Aaron BowerFeatured ColumnistOctober 16, 2013

For those who were caught up in the celebrations when England qualified for the World Cup in Brazil on Tuesday night, a little bit of history was made in the Belgium vs. Wales clash.

Liverpool's Harry Wilson became the youngest ever player to wear the red of Wales—replacing the record set by Gareth Bale—at the age of 16 years and 208 days old.

It's the latest debut in Wilson's career which has no doubt set tongues wagging as to the potential of the 16-year-old. He also became the youngest ever international to represent Liverpool, beating England's Raheem Sterling in the process.

And, whilst all of his family were no doubt gleaming with pride after Wilson's debut in the 1-1 draw in Brussels, one member of the family will no doubt have been jumping through hoops.

When Wilson was just 18 months old, his grandfather placed a £50 bet on his grandson turning out for the national side before he retired.

Last night, 62-year-old Peter Edwards won £125,000 in a remarkable act of foresight. He was quoted odds of 2000/1 from a bookmaker in Wrexham when he placed the bet. He told the BBC he intends to retire early.

"I retired immediately. I told my manager yesterday that if Harry plays I wouldn't be coming back," said Mr Edwards.

"I've retired one year early. I have come home now and will not be going back. Not bad for a daft bet."

Believe it or not though, it isn't exactly the first time a family member has had the vision to place a bet on a relative making it big in the professional game.

Perhaps the most notable example is way back in 1992. It was then that the Kirkland family decided they were so confident in young Chris' potential they would wager he played for England. Quoted odds of 100/1, several of them each placed £100 on it coming true.

Fast forward 17 years to 2006, and his appearance as a substitute against Greece earned the syndicate £10,000 each.

And more recently, Manchester United's Ryan Tunnicliffe made his father a small fortune, too. In a Capital One Cup tie against Newcastle United, Tunnicliffe's debut for United earned his father £10,000. He staked similar wagers to the Kirkland's, £100 at 100/1.

So, for all the people who question it sometimes, it appears gambling does pay. If you've got a young child who is showing promise with a football at their feet, get down to your local bookmakers and back them to make it.

It could make you a small fortune.

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