Match 18
Saturday, November 26th 1910.

Plymouth and District League
Tavistock v City Reserves

Saturday, November 26th 1910. SOUTHERN LEAGUE.
Exeter's Experimental Team

Exeter City were engaged in a Southern League match today against Portsmouth at St. James's Park.

Neither side was anything like full strength. The City had quite an experimental eleven out, while Pompey were without Buick, who has not recovered from an injury sustained in a recent match, and the amateur, L.A. Louch, who is in bed with pleurisy. Worthington played centre-half, and Hall, late of Newcastle United, centre-forward. The City gave a trial to Maxsted, the Royal Artillery soldier who is stationed at Topsham Barracks, at centre-forward. Maxsted has been doing very well in reserve team matches, and in fact scored a "hat trick" on his first appearance. Pratt was on the sick list, and was deputised for by Griffiths, while Evans had gone to St.Helens owing to his wife's illness. Watson, Bell, and Garside, in addition, were all missing from the forward line.

The afternoon was fine, but rather misty, and the crowd, due of course to the early start, were rather slow in turning up. At the kick-off (2.15) there were not more than 3,000 present, but the empty spaces were filling up. A large number of soldiers were present to give Maxsted a good "send off".

Whittaker, who was captain in Watson's absence, lost the toss, and Maxsted kicked off towards the St. James's Road end against the sun. Portsmouth looked a very smart side in white jerseys, while Exeter of course were attired in their new red and white stripes.
Teams :
Coates Jones
Bassett Griffiths Prideaux
Parnell James Maxsted Hughes Cooke
Referee: Mr A.E.Farrant, of Bristol.
Long Turner Hall Kirby Noble
Knight Worthington Yates
Warner Thomas

Maxsted was nearly through in the first minute, receiving a pass from Griffiths, but Warner cleared. Portsmouth then changed the course of the play, and Long made a dangerous advance, but Bassett finally cleared with a huge kick that carried the ball clean out of the field and on to the railway line. A new leather was brought out, and Turner screwed it over the goal line following the throw-in.
Five minutes from the start Bassett made a weak clearance, which went straight to Turner, and the inside-left, dodging between Jones and Coates, scored with a fine rising shot, with Whittaker making a despairing effort to save. Portsmouth pressed for some time, but at last, from a run down on the Exeter left and a good centre by Cooke, James headed just over the bar. The Portsmouth goal experienced another narrow escape when Hughes fired over from Parnell's pass. The visitors then took up the running again, and Kirby hit the crossbar with a fine shot, Griffiths conceding a corner from the rebound. Whittaker saved the flag kick, and James and Parnell made ground up the right wing. This produced a corner to Exeter, which was cleared, and when Pompey got on the move again Hall was pulled up for offside. The visitors were having much the better of the exchanges, and very little had been seen of Exeter's experimental forward line. Portsmouth continued to produce attacking moves, and Hall, who was playing well up to the City backs, was proving troublesome, except that he was too prone to be caught offside, and he was once bowled over by Bassett with an old-fashioned shoulder charge.

Following a clearance by Griffiths, Parnell dribbled through and passed to James, who fired wide. Cooke was given a well directed pass by Maxsted but ran too far, and Thomas cleared. Long was fouled by Griffiths, but the free kick was headed clear by Bassett, and when Maxsted sent the ball out to Cooke the winger again dallied and was robbed by Thomas. Whittaker saved brilliantly from Hall, while Griffiths kicked out a short range shot from Kirby while standing practically underneath the crossbar. Maxsted handled the ball unseen by the referee, and Warner was stunned in a collision with the soldier. Kirby put in a hefty shot which Whittaker saved in great style, and then followed a rare scrimmage in front of Cope, James finally putting the ball outside the post with the goalkeeper on the ground. Half-time:
Portsmouth 1-0 Exeter City

The crowd had increased to about five thousand. Whittaker diverted a centre, and then Exeter attacked for several minutes without being able to score. Portsmouth broke away again and Jones was too slow to catch Kirby, but the final shot was well saved by Whittaker. The forward play of Portsmouth was always dangerous, their passing being far more accurate than Exeter's. Play was eventually carried to the other end, and Cope jumped up and caught a centre from Cooke. Maxsted now appeared to be tiring, and once failed badly from a nice centre by Parnell.
Portsmouth then scored a simple goal. Coates attempted to put the ball into touch, but Long snapped it up, and centred to Kirby, who beat Whittaker from the easiest of positions. The goal was solely the outcome of Pompey being quicker on the ball.
This further reverse took the heart out of the home players and the crowd alike, and when the City forwards did get away Pompey's backs either stopped them or the passes went astray. With five minutes to go Maxsted sent the ball over the bar after Parnell had run half the length of the field, while James, a minute later, fired high over from another good chance. A mist was now coming up, but it was not bad enough to endanger the game being brought to a finish. Play came to an end with Portsmouth packing their goal, and Exeter were still unable to score.

Last season:
Exeter City 5 Portsmouth 0.
In 1908-09:
Exeter City 4 Portsmouth 1.

Exeter City are going from bad to worse, and they have now dropped to eighteenth in the table of twenty clubs, with only New Brompton and Southend below them. It is always a risky policy to experiment with a team occupying a lowly position in the League, and this was exempli fied in no uncertain manner against Portsmouth. Gunner Maxsted of the Royal Field Artillery was not altogether a success in the first team, despite his promise in reserve team games. He was somewhat slow, while his passing was badly timed. Cooke was a decided failure on the left wing, being repeatedly robbed whilst in possession, and in fact the only members of the forward line to be of any service whatsoever were Hughes and Parnell. The failure of the forwards put a lot of work on the defence, and had it not been for Whittaker, Portsmouth would have ran up a good score.

PLYMOUTH AND DISTRICT LEAGUE. Tavistock v City Reserves.

Played at Tavistock in fine weather, before a large crowd. There were only ten men in the home side to begin with, one of the players having missed his train. Tavistock attacked at the start, but Minhinnick failed when he had a good chance of shooting. Snell put in a shot from a narrow angle, which Wells saved, then Trethewey passed to Demellwick, who fired a good shot over the bar. At the other end Whittaker swung in a perfect centre to Chenneour, whose shot went wide. A fine breakaway by the Reserves saw Drew gain possession, and his low drive struck the upright, the ball rolling into the net for the opening goal. After Wells had saved from Hill a misunderstanding in the Exeter defence resulted in Small being presented with an open goal, and he accordingly sent the ball into the net for the equal iser. Tavistock monopolised play in the second half, playing pretty football, but they were unable to score.
Tavistock 1-1.Exeter Reserves.


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