Match 23
31st December 1932
Third Division
Bristol City v Exeter City
Western League
Exeter City Reserves v Taunton Town

AT BRISTOL CITY'S EXPENSE  Grecians' Double One Rung Nearer Promotion

Saturday, December 31st 1932.
EXETER CITY 1  (Houghton) 
Half-time 0 - 0.

The game was not as exhilarating as had been expected. Bristol were a very moderate combination, with Bowen the one dangerous forward in their attack. The Exeter forwards were not at their best, and Whitlow was closely marked by Parker, who had heard all about the Exeter leader's recent goal-getting. Parker and Childs, in fact, the two centre halves, were the game's best and strongest players. The game ended in semi-darkness.

Bristol City.
Knox Taylor
Dunn Parker Brinton
Homer Keating Bowen Loftus Scriven

Referee:- Mr J.M.Wiltshire, of Sherborne.

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

There were about five thousand people (including a contingent of excursionists from Exeter) present when the teams came out. A strong wind swept the ground from goal to goal and the turf was greasy on the surface though firm enough underneath. Exeter City wore white jerseys so as to avoid clashing with Bristol's red. Childs won the toss and elected to face the wind in the first half. Instantly Welsby broke away on the left, but Taylor came to the relief of Knox and cleared. Bristol won three corners in quick succession, Davies saving them all. At length Houghton with a nice pass down the middle brought relief and Whitlow got his forwards on the move. The ball was eventually returned by Scott to Whitlow, who was robbed in the act of shooting by Parker. Somerville saved from Welsby and with the goalkeeper out of his goal Houghton tried a lob shot which went just over the bar. The attendance by now had grown to 6,000.

Bowen was prominent in getting away in a really lively Bristol attack, in which the ball was swung about freely and generally in the direction of Scriven, but so well did the Exeter halves and backs cover up that the home line could not find an opening to shoot for goal. These vigorous advances by Bristol only went to demonstrate the strength of the Exeter rearguard, in which Hughes, playing on his old ground, excelled. Five minutes before the interval Homer gained possession in a favourable position but shot high over the crossbar. Davies, in the next Bristol incursion, pounded away a high centre from the Bristol right winger. Dunn, an ex-Services player who was making his debut for Bristol City, was conspicuous for clever work in midfield, as was Parker, who was giving Whitlow very little freedom of movement. Bristol's attacks were fading out repeatedly in face of Exeter's strong defensive covering, but at the same time it was surprising that the men from Devon were so subdued as regards their own attack, and half-time arrived with nothing on the score-sheet. Bristol were very aggressive again immediately on the re start but "Happy" Houghton brought relief with a nice pass to Welsby, who dribbled half the length of the field and finished up with a shot which Somerville saved, the goalkeeper pulling the ball down from just below the cross-bar. Whitlow and Welsby cut out a chance for Houghton, who drove the ball over the goal. Poulter tried his luck with a shot which went too high, and Houghton then cleverly drew the defence and swung the ball out to Welsby, but Taylor came across at full speed and smothered the move.

The Ashton Gate men were now making a big effort to secure the lead, and their open order attacks caused Exeter a good deal of anxiety. Davies, however, was a wonderfully safe last line of defence, and his coolness and clever positioning prevented the Bristolians from reaching their ambition. Threequarter time came and went, and the score sheet was still blank. But it was not afterwards blank for long. When the second half was 25 minutes old Barber placed the ball up the field, and it struck one of the home players and went to Houghton. The inside left coolly dribbled past Taylor, drew Somerville out, and shot nearly into the unguarded net. Loud and prolonged cheering was heard from the Exeter excursionists. In the closing stages Scriven came very near to scoring for the Babes with a hefty shot from the wing, and there were desperate Bristol attacks, but Davies was as safe as the Bank of England. As the result of today's win Exeter City displace Norwich in the League table and take third position by virtue of a fractionally superior goal average to that of the Canaries.

Western League


Making their second appearance at St James's Park within a week Taunton Town made several last minute alterations in their team to meet the City Reserves today in connection with the Western League. Higgins being unfit, Courtney played outside left for the Reserves. It was soon apparent that there was a big difference in ability between the two teams, and the Taunton defence was given little respite. Most of Exeter's best moves were inspired by Kennedy, a player much above the average in this class of football, and in the opening minutes Johnson was fairly bombarded with shots from all angles. It was no fault of his when Exeter took the lead.

City Reserves. Ince; Angus, Miller; Connaboy, E.Keefe, S.Barnes; Gumm, S.Risdon, Hurst, Kennedy, Courtney.

Taunton Town. Johnson; Mc Lean, P.C.Crocker; L.Webber, Curtis, Brace; Whitehead, Smith, Burrows, G. Brean, S.Thomas.

Kennedy started the move which gave Exeter the lead by slipping the ball out to Courtney. It was returned to the goalmouth where Risdon scored an easy goal. Hurst, who along with Jimmy Gumm has signed professional forms, should have scored a second goal, but from Kennedy's through pass he shot straight at Johns on. The Taunton goalkeeper continued to be given plenty of practice, and several more excellent saves were made by him, but he was eventually beaten by Hurst from another of Kennedy's grand passes. It was apparent that Miller was far from fit, and it was a wonder that he was playing in a match of this description. Burrows, who was easily the outstanding figure in the Taunton ranks, scored a goal from close range after 23 minutes. Hurst, Risdon and Kennedy scored for Exeter, who led by 5 goals to 1 at the interval. A clever bit of dribbling by Connaboy led to Exeter's sixth goal of the afternoon, scored by Kennedy. Whitehead reduced the lead, but three goals by Hurst and one by Gumm took the City to double figures.


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