Match 22
27th December 1932
Third Division
Exeter City v Swindon Town
Taunton Town v Exeter City Reserves

Swindon Overwhelmed Whitlow Again Prominent

Tuesday, December 27th 1932.
EXETER CITY 5  (Whitlow 3 Houghton Welsby)
Half-time 1-0.

Swindon were in the happy position of being able to field an unchanged team, but Exeter were forced to make two changes, due to Miller and Higgins being injured in the Boxing Day match..

Exeter City. 
Gray Hughes
Clarke Childs Barber
Scott Poulter Whitlow Houghton Welsby

Referee:- Mr S.F.Rous, of Hemel Hempstead.

Quinn Brooks Morris Starsmore Munnings Braithwaite Lambie Godfrey Girvan Dransfield
Swindon Town.

The afternoon was showery, and the rain made the pitch slippery. There was a crowd of about 12,000 when the teams came out, and the spectators were still streaming in as fast as the turnstiles could get them through. Swindon wore white jerseys instead of their usual red. The City had to change to white for yesterday's match. Childs captained Exeter, but lost the toss, and Swindon chose the St. James's Road end in the opening half. Exeter got off the mark well, and a couple of well executed attacks roused the holiday crowd to great enthusiasm. Within five minutes of the start, there were about fourteen thousand inside the ground, with people still arriving in large numbers. Houghton and Barber cleverly sent Welsby away in possession, and with the rest of the forwards ready and only Girvan between line and the goal, a score seemed imminent. Welsby made poor use the of his opportunity, however, delaying his centre and then firing the ball much too hard right across the field to Scott, whose header was easy for the Swindon defence.


Morris was making his usual energetic foraging rushes, but the Grecians' team-work was so good that all the danger was at the Town end, and now, from a centre by Scott, Welsby headed close. At the other end, when Morris swung the ball out to Quinn, Gray checked the winger splendidly, but following the throw-in, the ball went to Munnings, who drove powerfully over the home goal. Davies coolly fielded a long shot from Braithwaite, and Whitlow then swept out a lovely pass for Welsby to dribble in and test Berry. The goalkeeper saved, and in Exeter's next attack Scott put in a hard swerving ball which flashed just by the post. The "gate" now appeared to be 15,000, a figure which compared very favourably with the 10,000 attendance for the Southend match on Boxing Day of last season.


Hughes was playing good football, and it was from one of his well placed clearances that Poulter beat Braithwaite and sent Scott away in the move which produced the opening goal. Scott nursed the ball along cleverly and centred low, and Whitlow collected the leather with his customary coolness, and turning, tapped it low into the corner of the net. This goal was the signal for a great storm of cheering. Whitlow's brilliant football and many goals have fired the imagination of the Exeter crowd, and they were waiting eagerly for just such a chance to show the extent of their appreciation of the classy centre-forward's work for the club. Exeter kept up the pressure, and from Scott's pass Whitlow shot strongly, the ball hitting Berry in the stomach and knocking him out for the "count." Happily, he soon recovered. Davies saved a long shot from Morris, and then Exeter scored a lovely goal from a Welsby to Whitlow to Scott move, but the referee ruled it out on the grounds of offside. With Exeter still attacking and the Railwaymen in defence working at high pressure, the half time interval arrived with the score:
City 1 Swindon nil.

The Swindon goal had a remarkable series of escapes from a mass Exeter attack when ends were changed, and the persistent City forwards were dangerous in another big effort just afterwards, shots by Poulter and Scott narrowly missing the goal. Houghton was proving himself a great source of worry to the hard pressed Swindon backs and halves, his many shrewd touches keeping the opposition "on their toes." Fourteen minutes of the second half had passed when the Grecians increased their lead with another richly deserved goal, Poulter slipping the ball through to Whitlow, who gave Berry no chance with a fast cross-shot to the top corner of the net. Whitlow, the hero of the afternoon, almost completed a "hat-trick" in the next minute, Houghton beating the opposition cleverly to get a pass through for Whitlow to bring Berry to his knees with another goal-worthy shot. The 'keeper this time managed to turn the ball around the post for a corner, which was unproductive. It was all Exeter now, the excellence of the City's football in every one of their departments enabling them to dominate the game so that the Town goal was permanently in peril. By way of a change, Swindon broke away and Brooks passed inwards to Morris, who shot hard against the foot of a post, with Davies beaten. Just after this Davies saved brilliantly from Lambie.


Childs, Clarke, and Barber were a very strong line of half backs and generally kept a firm hold on the visiting forwards, as well as finding time to give their own attackers effective support. Exeter were soon attacking after that brief Swindon rally, and Welsby centred to Poulter, whose header was saved by Berry. But sixteen minutes before the finish, with Exeter pressing steadily, Whitlow passed across the penalty area to Houghton, who simply side-footed the ball past Berry for a third goal to the Grecians, and the first scored by any Exeter forward other than Whitlow since the match at Cardiff on November 5th. Between then and now Whitlow had netted a dozen goals in the League and one in the Cup! And Whitlow came along now with another splendidly cool shot to make Exeter's total of goals four, accepting a wide flung pass and waiting till Berry was almost on top of him before shooting past the goalkeeper and into the net. A header from Poulter landed on top of the net with Berry out of position. Welsby, collecting a pass from Whitlow, dribbled past Dransfield and with a clear field ran on to net another simple goal. The match was developing into a rout. The end was approaching fast now, and the Swind on players must have been praying for the long whistle. Exeter made every effort to further increase their score, and the excitement was kept up right to the end.


Whitlow's goal-scoring feats are becomg famous. His two opening goals this afternoon made his total for the holidays seven, and he followed this up by providing Houghton with the opening from which he obtained Exeter's third point. Then Whitlow netted his eighth Christmastide goal. The City were infinitely the faster and cleverer team, despite the two changes which were enforced through injuries. Hughes and Gray made a very businesslike back division, just as they did in the match at Bristol on December 3rd. Poulter found some difficulty in settling down to the position of inside-right, but all the other forwards were in top form.



The City Reserves impressed as a skilful, well balanced side on the Taunton ground this afternoon, and when Thomas broke through for the home side Ince effected a splendid save. Blackmore, who deputised in goal for Johnson, brought off the best save of the afternoon from Gumm at point-blank range. Play changed quickly from end to end, and Thomas tried his best to penetrate the City defence. He had several keen tussles with Ince, and on one occasion the referee found it necessary to issue words of caution to both players. The second half was as keenly fought out as the first, and with the end approaching Kennedy from Gumm's centre scored for Exeter with a terrific shot which had Blackmore beaten all the way. The City continued the better side, and Kennedy came close to adding to their lead.


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