Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

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Rob R
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Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by Rob R » Sun Aug 14, 2016 10:08 am

Again a queerie, whist cataloguing my programme collection. The Scotland team is made up of the usual Queens Park players , Players from senior Amateur English sides and a few , of I take it, as young ground staff players who were not old enough to sign professional as was the rules in those days i.e. Airdrieonians ,Third Lanark, Clyde and Queens Park Rangers. What captured my attention was the Scottish goalkeeper Alex Williamson who's club was listed as Wormit, Could anyone give me a run down on this club?

bluedragon
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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by bluedragon » Sun Aug 14, 2016 12:33 pm

I cannot add anything about the club other than to say there were two players from Wormit Amateurs capped at amateur level. The other was J Rodger who played against the Republic of Ireland in a 2:0 win on 12 May 1954.

David Ross did some interesting research in another thread that may point to why there is only one Queen’s Park player in the 1958 match versus Northern Ireland. At that time the club were at the bottom of the First Division. They were due to play second-placed Rangers at Ibrox that day (they lost 1:5). Rangers had 5 games in hand over leaders Hearts but were 15 points behind. Queen’s Park would have selected their strongest team to play the league fixture at the expense of the amateur international team. The only QP player was WDS Scobie who only made 19 league appearances. Two weeks later Scotland played Wales and that was the only match ever played by amateur Scotland with no Queen’s Park players in the Scotland side. Having said that, John Freebairn (then of Glasgow University) appears to be the other ‘keeper in contention in 1958 and the non-availability of Queen’s Park players may not have had an impact on the selection of the ‘keeper.

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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by bluedragon » Mon Aug 15, 2016 11:39 am

A quick check of the British Newspaper Archive gives a first mention of the club on its formation in 1926 (just “Wormit”) and in the 1930’s they were playing in the Angus Amateur League and entered the Scottish Amateur Cup. Home games appear to have been played at Wormit Recreation Park. After the War in 1947 the club is revived they are in the Midlands Amateur League. Woodhaven Recreation Park, Wormit was converted from a school playing field to a football ground and opened on Saturday 5 September 1953 in a match between Wormit Amateurs and Carnoustie Panmure.

Rob R
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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by Rob R » Wed Aug 17, 2016 11:19 am

Just Googled Wormit on Google maps it where the Tay rail bridge leaves Fife across to Dundee. Can see no trace of a football ground though. Thanks for all the info.

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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by bluedragon » Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:28 pm

The Wormit FC pavilion, now demolished, is recorded at being at the junction of Riverside Road and Flass Road in the corner of what now appears to be the playing field for the local primary school. The Junior club (Wormit Athletic 1898-1902) played at “the Playing Field” and the later Wormit FC played at “Wormit Recreation Park”. They may have been different names for that same piece of land. I can pick the site up on Google maps. I wonder if the later move to “Woodhaven Recreation Park” is what is now the nearby Waterstone Crook Sports Centre?

embow
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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by embow » Thu May 23, 2019 10:55 pm

Hi.
I played for Wormit in the mid to late 60's, albeit mainly in the reserves.
The club had two teams then playing in the Midlands Amateur League which had a first and second division. The reserves played in the Midlands Alliance league.
I well remember Sandy Williamson in goal when I was a wee boy. I was of the next generation of players after Sandy left. He was a big lad that cleared everyone out of his way when coming for crosses as keepers were allowed to do, given how they were also allowed to be shoulder charged back then. You had to strong to be a keeper back then. I think Sandy finished with Wormit in the early 60's and I have a distant recall that there was some connection with Glasgow. He either came from Glasgow or left to go there. I just can't fully remember. I can recall my dad speaking about the capping of another Wormit player as being incredible. Jim Rodger the other international cap was an ex player who lived locally.
Wormit was a strong club back then with some excellent players and they were constantly vying with teams from Dundee and surrounding area for honours. The league title was won in 1964 by NCR who also went on to win the Scottish Amateur Cup that year. That was the quality of the teams in the first division then. Strong outfits also included Timex, Monifieth and Arbroath High FPs. The RAF Leuchars team was never an easy fixture at any time.

Wormit's pitch ran parallel to Riverside Road between it and the local railway on the other side of the pitch. One end abutted the old primary school, the other end had the changing hut, gable end on to the pitch and Flass Road, opposite Mars Gardens.
All of this is now long gone with the ' new' Wormit school and playground now on this site. Back then there were no houses up Flass Road past the railway which closed in May 1969. It was all fields the other side of the railway. The best view of a game was to stand up the railway embankment with your back to the fence looking down on the pitch. Just like being on the terracing at any football ground at that time.
The railway was the mode of travel to away games in Dundee, Broughty Ferry, Monifieth, Arbroath or to Tayport. Tayport Amateurs morphed into Tayport Juniors and won the Junior Cup a number of times in the 90's. Newport FC had gone into abeyance at the end of the 50's and Wormit was the only team to try to get a game for. I lived in Newport. Wormit went under in the late 70's/early80's I think because the ground was acquired for building the new school and it's grounds and Newport was reformed playing at Waterson Crook which was developed in the early/mid 70's.
Wormit back then was a small village joined to Newport in the town council but still a separate community in many ways with its railway station, shops, garage, church, village hall, tennis and football clubs and a sailing club. One memory of the station was that's where buses and cars parked to let the occupants get the train for the football mainly at Dens Park, especially in 1961-62 when Dundee lifted the First Division league title. The station would be black with fans desperate to get across the Tay. Celtic, Rangers, Hibs, Hearts, from east and north Fife and of course Dundee and United fans also. Changed days indeed!
I haven't been back since the early 1990's as I moved to work and live in Caithness in 1974 but still have lots of teenage memories of following and then playing for Wormit.
I live in a village called Lybster which is where the founding father of Spanish football came from. Dr William Mackay went there to work for the Rio Tinto mining company and introduced football to the workers. The rest is history and Real Madrid, Barca, Seville etc.!
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/William ... der_Mackay

bluedragon
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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by bluedragon » Fri May 24, 2019 10:48 am

Thanks for the interesting post and the information on Wormit Amateurs.

You mention the good level of amateur football in the area. In the seasons immediately surrounding the Second World War there were regular trial matches for the amateur international team specifically for East coast players. More often than not the teams were “North of the Tay” and “Fife”. However, without these games it must have been harder for the Wormit players to catch the eye of the selectors.

Sandy Williamson – Prior to the International against Northern Ireland on 22 February 1958 two different amateur Scotland XI’s played Dumbarton and Kilmarnock on 3 & 5 February respectively. Sandy played against Dumbarton and was selected for the International. His opponent for the goalkeeping berth was John Fairbairn (Glasgow Univeristy). John played in the three other internationals of the 1957/58 season and went into senior football most notably with Partick Thistle. Sandy was back under the selectors’ radar in the 1960/61 season playing for an amateur Scotland XI against Motherwell on 31 January 1961 but it was John Miller (Queen’s Park) who was selected for the internationals that season.

Jim Rodger – was capped playing against the Republic of Ireland on 12 May 1954 at Celtic Park, Glasgow. We have no record of any trial matches that season but that does not mean there weren’t any! The selectors picked a strong team that included five Queen’s Park players, two playing in the strong Northern League in the North East of England and future full internationalist Bert McCann who was a student on Dundee United’s books at the time.

Clem Dempster – He was another Wormit Amateur player. He was selected to play in one of two different amateur Scotland XI’s that were to play Queen’s Park Strollers. His match was on Christmas Eve 1955 and the other scheduled for January 1956 was cancelled due to frost. It is possible, as we do not have the full team, that he may have played in a trial match against a Falkirk XI in February 1956. However, he was not selected for that season’s internationals.

embow
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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by embow » Sun May 26, 2019 8:35 pm

Thanks for the further information blue dragon.
I just vaguely recall a Dempster playing in the late 50's but it's only the name that's ringing any bells.
I think he was a painter to trade and worked with a Tayport painter's business. I've a feeling I may have delivered butcher meat to his house as I had a part time Saturday morning job with one of the local butchers when a teenager, and the son of the owner was Wormit's centre half in the early 60's who played with Sandy Williamson. His name was Alan Hendry. He took over from a lad called Norrie Thompson a joiner to trade who worked for the joiner across the street from my home and who was the captain at the time when Sandy would have been capped.
I do remember Fairbairn playing for Thistle. Had a crew cut if I recall. Also remember McCann playing for 'Well. He would have played with Ian St John and the Weirs, Hastie and Andy. Part of the 'Ancell Babes' as they were known as.

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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by bluedragon » Mon May 27, 2019 8:17 am

I had a look for other players with Wormit connections.

(James) Noel Wannan – he was born in Wormit and lived there although he worked in Dundee as a dental mechanic. He played Junior football first for Monifieth Tayside (1951/52) followed by Broughty Athletic (1952/53) and then signed for Dundee Arnot in October 1952. He had two seasons at Downfield (1953/54 & 1954/55). He was a centre half and was the penalty taker at Downfield. He also appears to have been a long range free kick expert. He was given a two-game trial for Montrose and signed for them in December 1955. He played 10 league games but was released at the end of the season as Montrose finished bottom of the second division. However, Dundee United signed him in July 1956 and he made 6 league appearances before being freed in December 1956. He went back to Junior football with Carnoustie Panmure.

embow
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Re: Scotland V Ireland Amateur International 1958

Post by embow » Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:07 pm

I remember Noel Wannan. I think he lived across the road from the pitch in the wee row of cottages, or maybe Woodhaven Avenue on the other side of Flass Road from the changing hut end of the pitch. I just can't fully remember. So long ago now.
The hut end would be in Woodhaven but the other end was at the start of Wormit! No idea where one changed into the other, but everyone seemed to know or sense when in one or the other!
Woodhaven itself has a wee bit of history to it not least the pier area (a decent goal kick away down the wee brae from the end of Flass Road) which is connected to the Mars Training Ship and the Norwegians in WWII.
http://www.eliehistory.com/explore/mars ... n-douglas/
https://www.fifetoday.co.uk/news/norweg ... n-1-148742

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