Pompey pre-season diary: Kev’s 28-hour trip… Dewing chat knocks out Jackett    

The Blues are this week stationed in Cork for pres-season – and The News have accompanied them.

Here is day one of our Pompey diary.

Pompey kitman Kev McCormack

Pompey kitman Kev McCormack

It took trips through three countries and spanned 28 hours, but intrepid duo Kev McCormack and Barry Harris arrived in time to greet Pompey’s squad.

With playing kit and equipment to transport, there was no flight for the backroom double act to catch, instead they took an alternative route.

The gruelling trek involved Kev’s ever-reliable Volkswagen transit van leaving the Blues’ training ground at 3pm on Friday - and arriving at the Fota Island Hotel on Saturday evening.

Such was the journey’s length, they stayed over at Kev’s sister’s house in Cwmbran, Wales, on the Friday night to rest.

Barry Harris

Barry Harris

The following day it was onto the Pembroke ferry, for the four-hour crossing to Rosslare, County Wexford, into the Republic of Ireland.

Even then, another four-hour drive was required to reach their Cork destination.

Apparently Kev contemplated throwing Barry into the sea at Rosslare, but had calmed by the time he supped Guinness at the team hotel.

He remained in fine spirits on Sunday upon the afternoon arrival of Kenny Jackett and his squad.

Best not remind him then that he’ll be stuck with Barry once more on Friday - setting off at 3am.

Pompey fan Barry Dewing had a pleasant surprise when taking his seat on the Sunday afternoon Aer Lingus flight to Cork from Southampton.

For the passenger sitting next to him was Blues boss Kenny Jackett.

Dewing is a familiar face at Fratton Park through his his long association with the club and excellent work with the Pompey Independent Supporters’ Association (PISA).

In fact, he was present at the High Court in April 2013 to witness fan ownership saving Pompey from liquidation.

Those who know Barry will concede the former taxi driver is well-versed in talking – and plenty of it.

When asked how he found his new friend Jackett, he responded ‘What an absolute gentleman, a lovely, lovely man and very respectful.

‘But he did have a kip for a bit of the flight.’

Something you said, Barry?​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​