Denaby Utd – Denaby 2, Notts Forest Reserves 2 – Scrappy Game at Tickhill Square

December 1945

South Yorkshire Times December 1, 1945

Scrappy Game at Tickhill Square.

Denaby United 2, Notts Forest Reserves 2

Each of Forests goals on Saturday acted like a tonic; for twice they scored and twice Denaby went through to equalise. I think if Nottingham had scored from the last astonishing penalty, had there been time, Denaby would have had another – just to keep the pot boiling. Had they played Forest’s hard, short, inclusive passing game they would have won – and handsomely.

The game was not without its moments, and the most remarkable of all came right on time. Styles pushed the ball through to Plimley but the Nottingham forward seen so obviously offside that a “pheep” from the referee, who had kept a tight rein on the game all the way through, seemed a certainty. But, I think, to everyone’s astonishment, nothing happened and Denaby bustle in to retrieve the damage. Plimley lost the ball, and so did Mellows, who had raced out in an endevour to clear, and in the subsequent melee with the goalkeeper still out, it was lifted towards the back of the net. A Denaby defender half believing, I imagine, that the whistle was still going to blow for offside, knocked it out with his hand. All this happened in less than a minute and while everyone was still wondering what the referee was going to do, he went over to his linesman and came back indicate in a penalty kick Brown took it, a tame shot, and to the delight of Denaby supporters, Mellows held it and the final whistle blew.

It was a remarkable ending to a game which had been scrappy but none the less at times exciting. Each goal had escapes and Denaby had been nearer to scoring than Forest, for during this time they were shooting in rather than attempting to walk the ball in. Forest scored after 30 minutes. They found a wide gap in the Denaby defence (they found quite a few this half) and Plimley used it.

Denaby’s equaliser came in a curious way. Vickers, who was playing left back, started it. Finding himself alone he took the ball well past the halfway line and winged it out to Burton. Burton pushed it out to Strachan near the corner flag on the right wing and the inside right centred only to see the ball block by Townsend. His header fell at Burton’s feet, Burton shot in. Howe headed out again – this time to Strachan, who put in a shot which the Forest goalkeeper held. It was a hard shot, and while he was recovering his balance perilously near the goal-line, Mosley shouldered him over.

Leverton got Forest’s second goal after 23 minutes in the second half. The ball was again pushed through a gap and Mellows had it covered unfortunately (though he was not to know) a defender, heading gout, obstructed the goalkeeper’s view and Leverton had an easy job.

The best goal of the match was Wright’s, seven minutes later. It was made again by Strachan and Burton, and it was a lovely shot.

Denaby worked hard – and none harder than Burkinshaw (he seemed, as always, tireless) but their passing did not compare with Forest’s for closeness and accuracy and they seemed to stick to and unfruitful policy of walking the ball in rather than shooting. Mellows was conspicuous in goal and Mosley got through a good deal of work. It was good to see the steady Wright again. He had, unfortunately, few opportunities. The one he had he used.