SOUTHPORT COLTS 1975
LANCASHIRE CUP WINNERS
Southport Colts were the winners of the inaugural Lancashire u19s Colts Cup in April 1975 – here is the story of one of the greatest feats in the history of the club as recorded in The Visiter in the editions on the dates below.
*Note only 4 points for a try in 1975!
Saturday February 22nd
“Tomorrow (Sunday) the club send an under-19 team to play Sedgley Park in the first round of the Lancashire Cup. The side is packed with experienced players with five of them having played with the first XV…..”
Tuesday March 4th
Sedgley Park 9 Southport 16
“An excellent team display on a very heavy ground …. assured (Southport) of a match against Liverpool Colts in the second round….”
“Southport pressurised the home team and most of the early exchanges took place in their opponents half.”
“Southport ran the ball on many occasions…”
“The second half saw Sedgley Park playing with more vigour and determination and Southport had to defend for a spell….”
“Gradually Southport pulled themselves back into the game….”
“…Southport were forced to defend valiantly in the remaining minutes.”
“This was a good victory for Southport and mention should be made of the forwards who, despite being much smaller and lighter than their opponents never shirked their task and gave a lot of ball to the backs who used the ball well in muddy conditions.”
Scorers: Tries*. McInerney, Whittle, M Greenhalgh Con. Ainsworth (2)
Tuesday March 11th
CUP VICTORY FOR U19 TEAM IN SUNDAY GAME
Southport 25 Liverpool 4
“For a time this was a hard …..cup match at Waterloo Road on Sunday, but gradually Southport wore down the opposition and towards the end were running rings round the Liverpool opposition and might well have won by an even greater margin.”
“Both sides had some golden opportunities to profit from their opponents mistakes. Although several were lost Southport did accept a fair number of those offered and found the gaps in the Liverpool defence…..”
“Liverpool began to look more and more like a beaten team,….”
“In the rucks Liverpool began to fade rapidly and their defence was inadequate to cope with all that Southport threw at them.”
“But the task before the visitors was an impossible one and with Southport’s enthusiastic support from the stand hardly calculated to do anything other than demoralise the Liverpool opposition, Southport won in worthy fashion and will take some beating ….. “
Scorers: Tries.* Garbutt (2), McInerney, I Greenhalgh Con. Whittle, McInerney (2) Pen. McInerney
Tuesday April 8th
ANOTHER GREAT VICTORY
Southport 31 Blackburn 6
“Southport’s u19 side marched on to the semi finals of the Lancashire under-19 Knock-out Cup with a convincing victory over Blackburn at Hillside on Sunday, and now meet Waterloo in the semi-final on a neutral ground.
From an unsteady start Southport gradually gained the ascendancy, which by the end had become a stranglehold. Blackburn became victims of yet another power-packed performance by this outstanding young side.”
“After the interval there was only one team in it, with tries coming at regular intervals as Southport carved their way with ease through a more desperate Blackburn defence.
Well before the end Blackburn had resorted to touch kicking as the only means of relieving the pressure. Any attempt the visitors made to run the ball was quickly stifled by the terrier like talking of the superb Southport side.
Only two games now stand between Southport and the Lancashire Knock-out Cup, and it will take an extremely good side to stop them. These performances auger well for the future of the club.”
Scorers: Tries.* M Greenhalgh (2), Whittle (2), Garbutt, Kersey Con. McInerney (2) Pen. McInerney
Saturday April 12th
CONFIDENT AIR AS UNDER-19s SET FOR SEMI.
“….the triumphs of the under-19 team in the Lancashire Cup have shown like a beacon.
With their youthful lack of inhibitions they have already delighted several large crowds at Hillside with their willingness to run the ball from virtually any situation.
They rightly earn pride of place in this weeks fixtures when they meet Waterloo in the semi-final, to be played at Liverpool on Sunday.”
“No one is underestimating the size of their task but there is an air of confidence ….
not to be baulked at by anyone in their pot-hunting campaign.”
Tuesday April 15th
PENALTIES END THE DEADLOCK
Southport 13 Waterloo 13 (Southport win 2-1 on sudden death penalties)
“Southport under-19s reached the final of the Lancashire Knock-out Cup on Sunday afternoon after a nail-biting finish against Waterloo at Liverpool Rugby Club’s Aigburth ground.
A period of sudden death extra time …. failed to separate two well-drilled hard-working sides, forcing the tie into a deadlock-breaking penalties decider.”
“The outcome was an unfortunate finale to a match which neither side deserved to lose.”
“A large contingent of Southport supporters had made the 25-mile trip to Aigburth and as the tie moved into extra time …. the cheers were overwhelmingly in favour of Southport.”
Scorers: Tries.* Garbutt, Whittle Con. McInerney Pen. McInerney
Saturday April 26th
UNDER-19s HAVE SIGHTS ON KO CUP
“At 3pm tomorrow the peace of the citizens of St Helens will be disturbed by the noise of an unprecedented number of Southport Rugby fans in support of the under-19 side in the final of the Lancashire Knockout.
The intended victims are Broughton Park Colts, and with only final victory between Southport and the cup (Southport) will not be going there to lose. For a side which really only got going this year their cup progress has been nothing short of a miracle.”
“The West Park venue is ideal and with at least 300 supporters making the trip the side will not be short of encouragement. The main threat to victory will come from the Broughton Park pack, which is reliably reported to have several players of the six-foot plus variety, but to counter this their backs are not of the same calibre.
Southport will undoubtedly employ the terrier-like tactics which have proved so successful in previous games, and hope that their superior backs will be able to obtain sufficient god possession to ruin Park’s day.”
Tuesday April 29th
BRILLIANT WIN FOR COLTS IN THE CUP FINAL
Broughton Park 4 Southport 9
“Southport Colts won the Lancashire Colts Cup final in brilliant fashion at West Park on Sunday, upsetting some of the forecasts that Broughton Park would not be unduly extended in the final.
Thanks to grim determination and terrier-like tactics that harassed the opposition throughout the match Southport never allowed Broughton Park to settle down and play their normal game.
A Broughton Park supporter suggested it would be all over by half-time. It was, but not in the way he expected because Southport then had a lead of 9-0 that they were determined to hang on to whatever happened in the second half.”
“Broughton Park were clearly the favourites and by all the laws of rugby they should have won, having a heavy determined pack and plenty of talent in their side. But they seemed to under-estimate the opposition and Southport’s strength lay in their determination and fine leadership of McInerney.”
“The closing minutes were nail-biting ones for the 300 or so Southport supporters but the opposition was kept at bay and Southport had won a fine victory.”
Scorers: Tries.* I Greenhalgh Con. Whittle Pen. Whittle
Southport: Catterall; Garbutt, M Greenhalgh, I Greenhalgh, Whittle; Matthews, McInerney; Bell, Kersey, Moorhouse; McNorton, Rich; Fairclough, Fletcher, Berry.
Also played in earlier rounds: Ainsworth, Caine
19/04/11Message from Keith Rich in Dubai:
…. all the odds were against us, we were the underdogs, the teams we played, in the main, were all better than us on paper, except for one thing we played as a team of 15. Not forwards and backs – one team…. All 15 giving 110% made us 17 or 18 young men on the pitch……this was, in my opinion, the main reason we did so well. I believe that if every player plays their part and gives 100+% then “miracles’ can, do and did happen. We often talk today about teams being “hungry” and it is this effort by all on the team that that comes through as “hunger” for success on the day.
Win or lose we all played to 100%+ and could have walked off the pitch with pride even if we had lost. Pissed off yes….but still proud…
Lastly I remember it being a lot of fun….the whole process in 1975 and rugby in general had a lot to do with the man I am today….still having fun….still very proud of being a Colt back in 1975….still have my 1975 winners tankard…..very battered (handle welded on….that is a story in itself….) from excess use at 20 years of Dubai 7’s……