Doll to go under the hammer

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A DANCING doll made famous by Hartlepool’s own Jeff Stelling and watched by thousands on the internet is set to be auctioned to raise money for charity.

The Hartlepool-born Sky Sports presenter admitted he was disappointed to hear that former Pools striker James Brown had been released by the club last week – but it also left him with a decision to make.

Under Jeff’s desk in the Sky Sports studio sits a dancing doll of the soul-singing superstar and striker’s namesake.

And to the delight of the millions of viewers of Soccer Saturday, the passionate presenter used to dance along with the doll every time James Brown hit the back of the net.

Little did Jeff know the fame that would come the doll’s way when he was handed it by Hartlepool-man Derek Welsh outside Rift House Community Centre, in Hartlepool, four years ago.

But after hearing that James Brown would not be pulling on the Pools shirt again next year after his contract was not renewed, Jeff said he plans to auction the doll for charity.

“I don’t know when but I’m thinking at some stage it will be auctioned for charity,” Jeff told the Mail.

“I remember when I was given the doll, I was in Hartlepool for the opening of Rift House Community Centre and a gentleman handed it to me and said ‘have some fun with that’.

“We had danced along in the studio when he scored before but the doll was brilliant.”

Jeff added: “I was disappointed to see James go. I know that Neale (Cooper) really rated him, but he has had terrible luck with injuries and to move forward clubs have to cut costs.”

Meanwhile, Jeff is preparing to present coverage of this weekend’s Champions League final just days after “the most amazing day in the history of the Premier League” when Manchester City won the league in added time.