Tag Archives: Bramcote

The Second XI Football Team 1980-1981

The Second XI had a pleasant and reasonably successful season back in 1980-1981, although it was possible to organise only seven fixtures. They lost their first match against Becket School, but were only to lose one more of the next five matches. Their record for the season of two wins, three draws and just two losses would have placed them comfortably in mid-table in the Premier League of today. Perhaps another Crystal Palace, Everton or West Ham. We drew games against High Pavement, Bramcote and Clarendon and then defeated Clarendon by 3-0 in the return and Bilborough by 5-2. Not a bad record for a team of eleven players picked from just nineteen available candidates:

asecond THE ONE

The goalkeeper was Richard Clark:

richard clark 700
And his deputy was, I think, David Lloyd:

other goalie

In defence we had Chris Turner:

chris turner 700

Alongside him was Julian Bower:

julian bower 700

Ken Blecher was the sweeper. He was the Team Captain, so he had the shiny satin finish shirt:
For some reason, we played in fairly dark blue shirts of a shade called ‘Admiral’ or ‘Azure’ apparently.  This had been worn as a change strip by Sunderland in the First Division a few years previously. The sleeves had a red and white design on them, as did the collars.

Ken Blacher

Now, back to the players.

Phil Sermon was a 100% team player who, although he was often a little quiet, always gave everything on the pitch:

phil-ser-mon-700

Paul Chappell was almost surgical in the strength and calmness of his tackles:

Paul Chasppell
Chris Batty was an accurate passer of the ball, with a powerful shot:

chris batty 7oo

Bert Crisp was a strong runner and created many chances:

bert crisp 700
Phil Colley supplied energy in midfield:

phil colley

Chris Ffinch played well in attack:

Chrs Ffinch 700

Robert Harwood was a confident goalscorer:

robert harwood 700

Stuart Burns also contributed well in attack:

stuart burns 700

On the team photograph, two players remain a mystery to me, although this all took place some 35 years ago now. The first is CD Richardson:

one

And the other is David Nowell, who, as you can see from the comments below, was the left full back, but who was unfortunately injured very early in the season :

three

Forgive me gentlemen.
Overall, the Nottinghamian reported that the players were “all keen to play and all contributed to a most enjoyable season. Everyone has done his best and given his all.”
A lot of my readers, of course, will not be familiar with any of these young men. Let them stand, therefore, for your own sporting efforts at school. Did you do your best and give it your all?
Perhaps you were not in a sports team of any kind. Well, just look at the faces of these sixteen, seventeen and eighteen year old young men. Look at their expressions. Their inner thoughts.
Nowadays they will be in their early fifties. Their team coach back in the day was in his late thirties. Well now, I am in my early sixties, and I just regret that I didn’t enter more Ché Guevara lookalike contests when I had the chance:

me close up

.

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Filed under Football, History, Humour, Nottingham, Personal, The High School

The High School’s best football season of the Modern Era

Overall, it must be said, the football team at the High School since 1968 has not really had a great deal of success. The exception to this, though, was the 1980-1981 season which was easily the most successful of the modern era. By the time the School Magazine, the Nottinghamian, was published, the team were undefeated in twelve matches. This record was extended to the very last game of the season which was a most unfortunate defeat at home by High Pavement Second XI who managed to score two goals without reply.

Here is the team photograph:

first eleven DAS BETTER Bxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

(back row) Dr.D.A.Slack, Norman Garden, Robert Crisp, Richard Mousley, Jon Bullock, Simon Derrick, John Ellis

(front row) Rob Persey, Raich Growdridge, Chris Peers, Neil McLachlan, Nick Cope, Chris Ingle

The team’s goalkeeper was Richard Mousley, whom the school magazine described as “reliable, agile, and when needed, very courageous.”

MOUSLEY 750 WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

They continued with the rest of the team:

In defence Richard Townsend was the left full back, replaced occasionally by Norman Garden. Both of them were deemed to be “consistently good players, and very determined in the tackle.” On the opposite side as right full back was Nick Cope, equally determined, and occasionally over-enthusiastic in the tackle:

Alas, Richard Townsend did not attend the team photograph on that coldish but fairly bright day in the Summer Term of 1981.

The central defenders included Raich Growdridge who was both team captain and sweeper. Raich was very skilful, with total commitment and a tenacious tackle. He was always capable of lifting the side when things were going against them. Raich had a trial with Derby County’s A team during the Spring Term, and is believed to have played perhaps three games for them. I was told by the Derby coach that had he not been over 18 years of age, they would have signed him for the club:

RACIH GROWDRIDGE 750 WWWWWWWWWyes yes yeas

The other central defender was Jon Bullock who was extremely commanding in defence and particularly useful when attacking at corners. He actually scored a hat-trick at Bilborough, an extremely unusual feat for a defender:

JONNN BULLOCKxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

In midfield, Tim Little was hard working and consistent. He also scored some very useful and well taken goals when he moved into a more attacking role:

TIM LITTLE XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Rob Persey was a tireless player, and a very determined tackler who possessed a great deal of skill when coming forward into attack. He was not the strongest defensive player, however:

ROB PERSEWY. 750 jpg XWWWWWW (2)

John Ellis played on the right, and scored a number of remarkable, even unbelievable goals, from between fifteen and thirty yards out:

JOHNNN ELLIS xxxxxxxx

Chris Peers was a fine left footed player, who could dribble well past a succession of opponents. He was a particularly skilful taker of corner kicks:

CHRIS PEERS WWWWWWWWWWWWW

Among the forwards,  Simon Derrick  was perhaps rather small, but very aggressive as a centre forward, with a lot of skill on the ground:

SIMONNNN DERRICK WWWWWWW

Chris Ingle was an excellent finisher, with tremendous pace. In the author’s humble opinion, he was the fastest High School forward of the modern era, with the possible exception of Leo Fisher. Chris scored nine goals in the season, with a hat-trick against St Hugh’s College, in Tollerton:

CHRIS INGLE ONE WWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

Other players to have figured in the squad included Neil McLachlan, who occasionally lacked total commitment, but had sufficient skill to play well as a replacement both in defence, midfield or attack. A veritable “Jack of All Positions”, the Nottinghamian called him and a valuable asset to the group!

NEIL MACxxxxxxxx33333333xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Robert Crisp, universally known as “Bert” was a skilful midfielder, who never let the side down when called upon:

BERT CRISP WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

Both Ken Blecher and Chris Turner also played in the team:

Overall, the side played seventeen games and won eleven of them. Five games were drawn, and there was a single defeat, by 0-2, in controversial circumstances, if I remember correctly, against High Pavement 2nd XI. It is interesting to notice how many of these schools no longer exist nowadays, thirty four years later. The team’s victories came over Brunts of Mansfield (twice), Becket(twice), Bluecoat(twice), Forest Fields 2nd XI (twice), High Pavement 2nd XI, Bramcote, Bilborough and St Hugh’s College in Tollerton. Drawn games came against Bilborough, West Bridgford, Bramcote and twice against Trent Polytechnic.

The team’s goals were scored by Ingle 9, Ellis 8, Derrick 6, Bullock 3, Little 2, Persey 2, McLachlan 1 and two own goals.

The football report in the Nottinghamian paid the fullest tribute, and rightly so, to the endless support given to High School football by Tony Slack, who was retiring at the end of this splendid season:

TONY SLACKKKxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

He in turn generously praised the team’s achievements, despite the limitations of selecting a team from a very small number of players. Set against this, however, was the players’ commitment to the game, their willingness to work for each other, and their high level of team work, which, on many occasions, enabled them to defeat opponents who were, technically, far more skilled than they.

Nowadays, these young men will be in their early fifties. It would be interesting to find out where any of them are now, perhaps with a message in the “Comments” section?

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Filed under Derby County, Football, History, Humour, Nottingham, The High School