28 April, 1922 at Middleton Park

Kirtlington (3) 4 -  Launton (0) 1

Referee: Mr Dance Linesmen: H Launchbury W. Clifton

Kirtlington: Norridge Loft Walton King Giles Wickson Edgington Enser Scarrott A. East R. East

Kirtlington Scorers: A. East 2 Scarrott 1 Wickson 1

Launton: T. Jeacock Carter Ancil Hughes W. Jeacock A. Jeacock Timms J. Jeacock C. Jeacock Cox Simons

Launton Scorers:  W. Jeacock 1

The competition for the challenge cup and medals offered by the Earl of Jersey for village teams came to a conclusion so far as this season is concerned on Saturday, when the two section leaders, Kirtlington and Launton, met to decide who should become the holders of the cup for the ensuing twelve months. The venue for the final was, as usual, Middleton Park, and by the time fixed for the kick-off there was an enormous crowd of spectators from a wide radius, and especially from the two villages directly interested. The ground was in splendid going order, and Mr Dance of Oxford, had charge of the game, Mr H. Launchbury, (Oxford) and Mr W. Clifton, (Bicester) acting as linesmen. The arrangements, though thorough in most respects cannot be described as ideal, nor will they be so until something is done to keep the spectators from encroaching on the field of play. With such a large crowd as assembled on Saturday it was impossible for the officials or police to prevent enthusiasts from overstepping the touch-line, and for such an important match as this it may not be out of place to suggest that another season the crowd should by some means be kept at least a yard clear of the playing pitch. The advisability of this was only too apparent on several occasions on Saturday.

For the first time for ten years the cup this season goes to Kirtlington, who,by reason of the fact that they proved themselves the better cup fighters, ran out comfortable winners by four goals to one. Whilst complimenting them on their well-deserved victory, however, one cannot but sympathise with Launton, who were forced to play under a handicap right from the commencement of the game in having to dispense with the services of Sansome, their right- half, who had left Launton a short period before the final and therefore had not the necessary residential qualification. He was on the field in readiness for play, but Kirtlington entered a protest before the match commenced, and this was sustained. Hughes who was selected for goal, thereupon took his place in midfield, whilst T. Jeacock, who kept goal last year, took his place between the sticks in his ordinary clothes. Even had they been at full strength, however, it is very doubtful if Launton would have prevented their opponents from winning, although the score against them might possibly have been lower. The game was very cleanly fought out by both sides, and Mr Dance's duties were rendered much lighter than they might have been in consequence.

Ancil won the toss for Launton, but there was little in the choice of ends. Straight from the kick-off Kirtlington advanced towards their opponent's goal, and R. East on the left was early prominent, indeed Scarrott was afforded a good chance of scoring from one of his centres, but the ball skidded of his foot. A. East, however, was near at hand, and without hesitation he drove the ball hard into the net, Jeacock being helpless. Kirtlington again threatened danger on the left directly afterwards, and this caused the Launton captain to move Hughes across to the opposite wing and put A. Jeacock in his place. During subsequent Kirtlington attacks Ancil made one or two timely clearances, whilst offside spoilt several movements by the visitors forwards. After a time Launton turned aggressors, and Simons opened a promising movement on the left, but he put the ball too far forward, and Cox, in attempting to retrieve it, twisted himself and fell heavily, necessitating his retirement for some five minutes. Scarrott had another opportunity of putting Kirtlington further ahead a few minutes later, but his shot lacked sting, whilst the next incident of note was a long shot by J. Jeacock, which went just wide. Kirtlington's second goal came soon afterwards, for from a pass by Edgington , Enser ran in and put in a shot which Jeacock appeared to stop on the goal line, but before he could get the ball away A. East had again forced it into the net. Cox had now re-appeared, and Launton opened a promising movement, but Walton relieved in the nick of time, and in so doing he sustained an injury which caused his temporary retirement, A. East falling back. Following this, Launton forced a corner following a shot by Hughes, which missed by inches, and from the flag kick C. Jeacock was unfortunate in having his shot charged down. In a subsequent attack Kirtlington obtained their third point, Scarrott atoning for previous failures by netting with a good shot. From now till the interval Launton were more or less on the defensive, and it was only excitement on the part of the Kirtlington forwards that prevented them going even further ahead. R. East, for instance, had a golden opportunity when only ten yards out, but although he put plenty of "power" behind the ball, it went straight to Jeacock, the opposing custodian, who could not help stopping it, whilst a little later the same forward shot yards wide from a similar distance. Just prior to the interval C. and J. Jeacock were in the picture with a nice bout of passing, making an opening for Timms, but that player shot wide. The interval whistle went soon afterwards with the score :

Kirtlington 3, Launton 0.

The Launton defence underwent some anxious periods after the interval, but for a time they performed well, and succeeded in keeping their opponents at bay. Enser appeared to be all over a scorer for Kirtlington on one occasion, but, hampered by two opponents, he shot feebly. C. Jeacock was then responsible for a fine solo effort, running almost half the length of the field and beating several opponents, but his final shot struck the side of the net. Kirtlington put the issue beyond all doubt shortly afterwards when they secured their forth goal. A free kick had been awarded to them for an improper throw-in on the part of a Launton half-back, and this was nicely placed by Wickson, the ball going well into goal. T. Jeacock got his hand to it, but the ball fell to the foot of Walton (who had been playing forward since sustaining his injury), and he put the leather well out of the reach of the custodian. In the subsequent attack, Launton were forced to concede a corner, and from the flag kick the ball hovered about in front of goal for some movements and was only cleared with difficulty. It was at this Juncture that Launton pulled themselves together a little, and although their effort was belated they succeeded in notching a goal. A free kick was awarded to them just outside the penalty area and was entrusted to J. Jeacock, who put the ball towards goal, and through a misunderstanding between the Kirtlington defence W. Jeacock was able to run up and put the leather into an empty net, Norridge having left his charge. Timms had a good opportunity of further reducing the lead soon afterwards, but he shot weakly behind. Launton were determined in their efforts now, and during a combined raid A. East was forced to concede a corner, but it proved fruitless. Walton had some nice chances on the left during this half, but he often dallied too long with the ball instead of centring, and so lost it. The closing stages saw another burst by the Kirtlington forwards, and at this period the Kirtlington defence was called upon to give of its best, but there was no faltering, and although the opposing forwards were round their goal when the final whistle sounded they were unable to again pierce a superior defence. Thus Kirtlington ran out winners by four goals to one.

Directly after the game the cup was handed to the captain of the winning team (C. King) by the Earl of Jersey amidst loud applause, and subsequently the two teams, officials, etc, sat down to a meat tea in the pavilion, to which full justice was done. The cup was filled and passed around, and various toasts were proposed and responded to.

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