THE 1923 JERSEY CUP FINAL

4 May, 1923 at Middleton Park

Launton (3) 6 -  Kirtlington (0) 1

Referee: Mr Launchbury Linesmen: W Clifton Mr Blackenburgh

Launton: I.Penn G Carter T Ancel A Jeacock W Jeacock C Simmons T Marriott J Jeacock C Jeacock F.J. Jeacock T Cox

Launton Scorers: W Jeacock 1 F.J.Jeacock 1 C Jeacock 3 T Marriott 1

Kirtlington: E.R.Norridge G Loft E Palmer C King, R East G Wickson W Walton J Enser W Scarrott A East F Loft

Kirtlington Scorers:  J Enser 1

What eared the fifteen hundred people who were gathered at Home Piece, Middleton Park, on Saturday, whether Bolton or West Ham won the English Cup?. They were concerned as to whether Launton or Kirtlington would have the honour of holding the Jersey Cup for the next twelve months, and excitement ran high, even amongst the spectators from neighbouring towns and villages. The railway magnate and the highbrow scholar, sons of soil and farmers, all argued on the merits of the respective teams, before and during the progress of the game. After the match there could only be one conclusion, and that was that Launton were emphatically the better team. Launton had figured in the four finals played since the war. They defeated Bletchingdon four years ago, were joint holders with Steeple Aston the next year, and last year Kirtlington won 4 - 1. Kirtlington first won the cup in 1889, and have held it on four occasions.

Kirtlington won the toss, but there was little advantage in choice of ends, as Old Sol only occasionally gave a glimpse of his existence. The opening exchanges favoured Kirtlington, who infused more dash into their play. If they had kept this up, there might have been a different story to have told. C. Jeacock commenced as a fourth half-back, probably bearing in mind Kirtlington's great rush last year. For the first five minutes Launton's attack was disjointed, whilst the speed of the Kirtlington forwards nonplussed the Launton defenders. After a period of stage fright both defences settled down. Almost at the commencement Wickson got in a long shot, which appeared to be going behind, but the ball swerved into goal, and almost, if not quite, beat the custodian. The first goal came after nine minutes play. It looked a simple affair, as the ball rolled steadily over the line out of Norridge's reach. W. Jeacock put into goal, C. of the same name got possession. Whilst on one knee, and tackled by Palmer, he got his right foot to the ball and found Norridge unsighted and unprepared. This success was short-lived, for F. Loft got away on the left, and Enser met his centre and crashed the ball passed Penn.

Launton had a brief attack and gained a fruitless corner, and then Kirtlington rushed down, and Scarrott put through, but the whistle had gone for off-side. The chief danger to Launton came from F. Loft, Kirtlington's outside left, who got in beautiful centres all through the match. Launton, though still very slow, were improving, and one could begin to see the probable result of the match. C. Jeacock is as much a star in the Launton football team with his mom-de-punme and artistry of his feet, as Charlie Chaplin is with his baggy trousers and inimitable feet in the film world. This player kept the Launton forwards together, and they forced several corners. After half an hours play T. Marriott got in a beautiful corner which F.J. Jeacock met with his head, and put Launton ahead. Kirtlington had hard luck with a free kick, which Loft took from ten yards out and struck the cross-bar. Yet another goal came Launton's way before the interval. Simons crossed the ball to C. Jeacock, who tricked Palmer and beat Norridge. Thus at the interval Launton led 3 - 1.
The second half was not very interesting to the Lilywhite's supporters, for the wasp got goals at regular intervals. R. East tried rally his shattered forces, and F. Loft got in some good centres, but it was only on rare occasions that Kirtlington were actually dangerous. For the first twenty minutes of the second half the play was very tame. Kirtlington had hard luck from a corner, and Loft had beaten Carter and was getting well away when Ancil dashed across and cleared. Some pretty work by the Launton forwards left C. Jeacock in possession. He manoeuvred for position, and beat Norridge with a hot shot, which hit underneath the bar and went into the net. Marriott was responsible for a fifth goal. He was lucky to get the ball from a rebound off an opponent, and made no mistake with his shot, which went just inside the post. A brief attack by Kirtlington was followed by severe pressure by Launton. Cox gave to F. Jeacock whose shot was saved by Norridge at the expense of a corner. W. Jeacock also shot in and Palmer headed over. These corners and another were put behind. Several good centres by Loft and a free kick proved of no avail to the Lillywhites, and then C Jeacock got the sixth and last goal from a corner. Receiving the ball from F Jeacock he had only Norridge to beat, and coolly placed the ball to the right of the custodian. Launton thus won 6 - 1

The presentation ceremony was very brief, the Countess of Jersey handed the cup to T Ancil, the Launton captain, who made a short speech and called for cheers for Lord and Lady Jersey, which were lustily given. The teams and officials were afterwards entertained to a meat tea at the pavilion. Full Justice was done. One of the players, after enjoying several helpings of boiled beef, accompanied with a good drink of hot punch was heard to remark "my old westcutt begins to buckle" Presumably he felt his "yellow waist" was beginning to feel uncomfortable with the quantity he had taken. And by this description it will be seen to which team the player belonged. Mr Wickson, the Kirtlington captain, thanked his lordship for his generosity. The arrangements for the final were well carried out by Mr G Elliott, the honourable secretary.

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