Match 06
19th September 1925
Gillingham (h)

Western League
Yeovil (a)

Saturday, September 19th 1925.

Attendance 5,500.

Bailey; Pollard, Flynn; Pullan, Crompton, Potter; Matthews, Kirk, Casson, Compton, and Shelton.

Sykes; Robertson, Hendrie; Goodman, Rutherford, Riddock; Edmed, Marshall, Mc Kee, Hall, and Berry.

Exeter City would have liked to field against Gillingham today the eleven which did so well in the evening match last week with Bristol Rovers, but fate was against them. Myers is still injured as a consequence of a hurt received in that game, and Hawkins has a swollen knee as a relic of the Charlton match at the Valley. Stanley Charlton being on the casualty list still, Andrew Flynn, the Reserves' reliable "skipper", came into the first team at the left back position, with Shelton at outside left, Compton taking the vacant inside berth. Gillingham had Sykes, formerly of Maidstone, in goal for Ferguson. The twelve hours' deluge which ceased only half an hour before the match time, left the playing field in splendid football condition, but kept away most of the country contingent of supporters, and the crowd was only small when the teams commenced operations. The newly-covered space on the popular bank, which was provided by the Supporters' Club, was packed in view of the threat of more rain. Owing to railway delays Gillingham did not arrive on ground until the close on three o'clock. The two centre-halves tossed for choice of ends, and Rutherford winning, Exeter had to face the wind in the opening spell. A free kick was given against Pollard for handling to stop McKee getting the ball but was well cleared. The next feature was a smart bit of work by Marshall which gave Berry a clear field. The outside left coaxed the ball ahead, and hit the foot of the post with a fast shot. Bailey saved from Mc Kee, and Edmed, in another of the Gillingham raids, shot wide with only Bailey to beat. The Hoppers, despite their late arrival, were very fast and nippy in attack, and so far had had the better of the game, but a foul by Riddock gave Exeter the opportunity of opening things out. The ball was, however, headed away by Rutherford, and the best Exeter could manage was a weak shot by Kirk. Berry had the better of a quick tussle with Pollard, and should have done better than to place the ball behind. Compton Scored from Shelton's Corner Kick. Exeter now came into the game, and a bout of clever long passing ended in Matthews placing the ball into the goalmouth for Sykes to fist away. The play of the Exeter left wing pair had been very poor so far, many centres going behind the line. Riddock intercepted a pass by Casson and sent Berry away, but the winger's centre was kicked clear in haste by Potter. In the Gillingham half Pollard fed Shelton with a nice pass, and the winger headed inwards to Compton, who shot obliquely along the carpet, and Hendrie, under the bar, turned the ball over the top. The ensuing corner was cleared, but in another move by the Exeter left wing (which had suddenly jumped into form) a corner was forced, and Shelton's flag kick was headed into the net with extraordinary skill by the versatile Compton, the goal coming in the twenty-second minute of play. Three minutes later Gillingham were unlucky not to equalise, for a swift dart through by Berry ending with him rattling the bar with a fine shot. Gillingham were working hard for a goal and the Exeter defence was none too sure at times. Bailey saved from Berry and Mc Kee, but in the last five minutes before the interval McKee scored for the visitors with a glorious drive from fully 25 yards.

Second Half.
When the game was resumed a centre from Shelton was headed goal wards by Casson, and Sykes fell on the goal-line in his effort to clear. He was hemmed in by the Exeter forwards, and after a hot scrimmage a free kick was awarded to the Hoppers. At the other end of the field Pollard robbed Mc Kee as the latter was preparing to shoot, then Matthews got away and centred across the goal-mouth but the ball escaped the attention of both Sykes and Shelton. Offside against Berry saved the situation for Exeter. The winger netted the ball, but the whistle had already blown. Sykes saved from Shelton, who had swopped places with Compton, and one from Compton was pulled down from under the bar by Sykes, who was performing excellently in his "debut" match. The play now was of the end-to-end variety, with the Hoppers generally making better use of the ball, but sixteen minutes after the resumption Kirk gave Casson a nice pass, and the hefty centre-forward delighted the crowd by beating Sykes with a pile-driver from long range. A free kick to Exeter, lobbed into the goalmouth by Pullan, was lobbed into the goalmouth by Pullan, but Matthews put it over the bar.
An Unfortunate Accident.
In subsequent attacks Kirk drove over, and Casson twice put the ball wide. Ten minutes before the end there was a very unfortunate accident. Hendrie and Casson played the ball simultaneously, and the Gillingham man fell, badly hurt. His right leg was fractured and there was a delay of some minutes before he could be taken from the field, the stretcher being fetched from the St. John's Ambulance Box at the top of St Sidwell's. After a break of twelve minutes the game was resumed, and Mc Kee, having worked his way through the City defence, placed the ball over the bar.


At Yeovil.

Gregory won the toss and set Exeter to  face the wind. Pidgeon got going and Lowton had a free-kick given against him for fouling the inside man, then cleared it himself. After five minutes a mi skick by Day let in Blackmore, who beat Vallis with a powerful rising shot just under the crossbar. The Yeovil goalkeeper then saved from Bolam. The City forwards kept up their attack, and Vallis saved from Newman. Hayward with a swift shot caused Pavey to punch behind, and from the corner kick Abbott levelled the scores with a fine header. This put some life into Yeovil, and Hayward shot wide. Lievesley with a good cross-shot put the City Reserves in front. Scott tested Pavey and Hayward shot wide. Pavey made many fine saves, but was beaten by Gregory, who headed a beautiful goal from a corner taken by Hayward. Half-time:- Yeovil 2 Exeter 2.

Second Half.

Yeovil continued to force the pace, and Hayward put in a fierce shot which just cleared the crossbar, and Pidgeon in another fast attack sent wide. Pavey was penalised for carrying, and a free kick in the penalty area given, but after a general scrimmage the ball was cleared. Gregory sent inches over following a fine run and pass by Scott. Result: Yeovil 2 City Reserves 2.


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