Emley 3-2 Winterton Rangers – Yorkshire League Division 1

March 22, 1980

Forty-three years ago Emley were riding high in the Yorkshire League, aiming to regain the title from rivals Winterton who had snatched it from the Pewits.  Emley had won at  Winterton earlier in the season and it seemed that they were not as strong as they had been the previous season.

But when they visited the Welfare Ground with Emley flying high at the top of the league, they seemed out to prove they were not a spent force.  They dominated the opening, testing Dennis, who made a fine save, then taking the lead after just five minutes.  A poor clearance enabled Senior to snap up the loose ball and drive it hard past Dennis.

Cook then missed a great chance to equalize and the Emley crowd were worried.  But soon afterwards the silence was broken by cheers.  A long ball was taken well by Walsh whose half-hit shot rebounded to Wilkinson, who scooped it over the ‘keeper.

Winterton weren’t too dismayed by this set back, and continued to force the pace resulting in several tense moments for the Emley defence.  They finally struck a second blow in the 26th minute, with the Emley defence rooted to the ground, Hamilton rose to head low into the net.

Wilkinson had a half-chance to equalize from a narrow angle, but the ‘keeper saved and Winterton continued to threaten as their forward line was allowed too much room, but by half-time they had not increased their lead.

The half-time talk must have galvanised Emley and playing towards the shed end in the second half they were much better.  Nichols had a fine shot which the goalkeeper pushed round the post and Brookes had a downwards header from a free-kick turned away in a similar fashion.

Winterton now retreated into defence and Emley forced three corners in a row, which did not bear fruit.  A strong shout for a blatant handball in the Winterton area was ignored and brought anger from the crowd as the tension rose.

Finally with 17 minutes left the equaliser came.  A Skirrow centre was headed on by Walsh for Wilkinson to hurl himself forward to force the ball home.  Then eight minutes later Winterton received a crushing blow.  Walsh got away down the right, drawing the defence.  He slotted the ball for Skirrow overlapping, to hit a shot to the far post where it was deflected into the net off a defender’s boot.

Emley went on to regain the Yorkshire League title that season, their third in five years, as well as winning the Sheffield Cup.

Team: Dennis, Skirrow, Lumb, Ingham, Brooks, Brook, Nichols, Wilkinson, Walsh, Hemingway, Cook.

Headlines and some photographs courtesy of Huddersfield Examiner and the Huddersfield and District Chronicle


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