South Yorkshire Times, May 16th, 1970
Chances For United – But Town’s Points
Denaby United 0, Mexborough Town 1
Denaby United gave neighbours Mexborough Town a lesson in how to create chances but avoid scoring goals at Tickhill Square on Saturday, and the man who might have been awarded a degree in the subject on this occasion was Denaby striker Howard Morley.
The gentle giant found gaping holes in the Mexborough defence three times in the first twenty minutes of this end-of-term “derby” game, and then proceeded to strike with all the accuracy of a bent pea-shooter.
It wasn’t misfortune that beat Denaby, it was missed chances. And Mexborough’s winning goal only rubbed it in, because it was a superb piece of cool opportunism that snatched the points.
Not that the visitors were overwhelmed at all, in fact Mexborough always held their own, and were on top for periods. Brian Parker had Denaby ‘keeper Ken Whitehead in trouble with some hefty challenges for high crosses and John Colley’s blonde head was always prominent where the midfield action took place.
But the most ardent Town supporter would admit that Morley’s private game of “find-the-net” had something to do with the result.
Only ten minutes were up when the first incident occurred. Town’s young striker Bob Davidson, was a little too optimistic when trying a back pass from 20 yards and Morley was onto the ball before Mal Brunt knew what was happening. With everyone holding their breath, the big centre-forward prodded the ball over the advancing ‘keeper…and over the cross bar.
Within two minutes Terry Glossop had given Mexborough the lead with a well-taken goal that had experience written all over it.
Denaby had just had a scare when Wiggles headed off the line from Parker and then Davidson, but the other full-back, Steve Toyne, had no chance of stopping Glossop’s goal.
This came when Parker harassed Whitehead for a lofted cross, and the loose ball dropped on the edge of the box to the Mexborough player-manager.
A superbly-flighted lob sailed over Toyne on the goal-line and dropped into the net. The goal gave Mexborough no breathing space – for Denaby hit back straight away and should have equalised almost immediately. England was being allowed a lot of space on the left and some of his runs led to one of those unfortunate “am I offside, or aren’t I?” incidents in the Mexborough area.
This time Morley ran in on the blind side, and with everyone appealing for offside, he dithered before deciding to shoot. The result was that Brunt was able to scramble the ball away for a corner as a stunned crowd stared in disbelief.
Two minutes later Kitchen worked another opening for Morley, and by now it was inevitable … the shot sailed wide of the post.
Denaby never got another chance to get back into the game. Young Kitchen worked hard up front, and Sumpner buzzed intermittently, but it was Mexborough who looked more likely to score.
Twice Parker had Whitehead in trouble, and the ‘keeper was again indebted to Wiggles for a goal-line clearance.
Bower retained his composure and held the defence tight, and Mexborough looked more confident as the minutes ticked away. It wasn’t a good game by any means but “derby” matches rarely are.
And so, the curtain rings down on Mexborough’s Yorkshire League campaign, but as to whether this final drama was a comedy or a tragedy – well it depends on who you support!
Denaby United: Whitehead (K), Wiggles, Toyne, Whitehead (P), Bennett, Gray, Sumpner, Willey, Morley, Kitchen, England. Sub: Reynolds.
Mexborough Town: Brunt, Colley (D), Iggo, Colley (J), Bower, Wood, Glossop, Davidson, Parker, Cullen, Steele.