Ballymena 2 - 1 Glentoran

Irish Cup - Round 1 - Replay
Wednesday, November 28th, 1928, 2:30 PM at Ballymena Showgrounds
Referee: P. Craigmyle (Aberdeen)
Ballymena  Glentoran

Goalscorers
James McCambridge 
James McCambridge (56)
David Hutchinson (65)

Team Managers
Selection Committee
Selection Committee

Starting Eleven
John Gough
Gordon McDairmid
John McNinch
David Reid
John Reid
Sidney Howard
James McCambridge
James Mitchell
Jamie Shiels
Richard Shaw
Walter Clarke
Ward
McKeown
Carleton
Samuel Scott
James Walker
Robert Stewart
Thomas McKeague
Billy Firth
Fred Roberts*
Johnny Geary
David Hutchinson

Ballymena have never had a stiffer fight than the replayed Irish Cup tie with Glentoran at the Showgrounds on Wednesday afternoon. It was only after a herculean struggle that they won by a goal, but this at least can be said, that they deserved their victory. The excitement of Saturday's match was overshadowed, and the suspense was even keener until Ballymena scored their leading goal, but then one felt that it was all over. But right up to the finish Glentoran were fighters, and even when they must have felt that their fate was sealed they continued to play with the same spirit of doggedness. It was a hard-fought game, full of thrills, and no one could have handled it better than Mr. Craigmyle, who was also the referee on Saturday last.

The sun shone brilliantly at the start, and Ballymena, having the luck of the toss, set Glentoran to face the glare. Gough picked up early, and then McCambridge let Shaw away, the latter forcing an abortive corner. Play fluctuated from end to end rapidly, both sets of backs being the stronghold of their teams. Danger came to the visitors' goal when Mitchell dropped the ball on the bar, and then at the other end McKeague shot weakly. Ballymena were now doing well, and only Ward's alertness in goal prevented a score. He had stopped a shot when Shiels harassed him, and he was obliged to turn the ball around the post for another corner.

After a busy minute or two at the home end Shaw and Shiels both had pots at goal, but each time the ball was charged down. Clarke tested Ward, who was surprising everyone by his fine custodianship, and then the outside right sent in again and Shiels headed against the bar, Ward catching the ball on the rebound. By no means out of the picture, Glentoran made a great rush for goal, and the combined efforts of the left wing had beaten McNinch when McDiarmid relieved the pressure at the expense of a corner. Coming away again, the Glens made good headway and had the defence beaten, but Gough sent to touch.

A spectacular clearance by McNinch gave Ballymena another chance, and they were going steadily when Mitchell was fouled, and D. Reid took the free, and Ward saved on the ground. Hopes rose high when Shaw led in and shot at point-blank range, but Ward saved at the expense of a corner, and a free kick followed. The visiting goalie saved again from Shiels, who had the backs beaten all the way.

Pressure by the Glens brought them well into the home half, and a corner resulted but it was unavailing. Ballymena were the more prominent team up to the interval, but Ward's fine goalkeeping nullified all their efforts.

Glentoran restarted with a rush, and very nearly scored in the first minute, McKeague crossing in nicely for Hutchinson to head into goal, but Gough managed to stop the ball with one hand. Still keeping on the offensive, the Ovalites forced a corner. A free for 'hands' let Ballymena away, and the ball went to Clarke, who dropped it into centre for Mitchell to miss by inches.

The opening goal came eleven minutes from the restart. Shaw overcame all opposition on the wing and lobbed into centre, where McCambridge got possession out of a ruck of players and turned in lovely to beat Ward all the way. The exchanges were more brisk than ever now, providing the spectators with succession of thrills and causing no little suspense for the follower of both aspirants. Gough punched clear from a corner, and was called on later to handle from a free. A cheer went up when McCambridge and Shiels got away on a clear field, but foul tactics cut the effort short.

With the coming of the equaliser, which Hutchinson headed through from a free taken by Scott, the game took a more exciting aspect than ever. Fighting desperately, Ballymena's efforts were soon rewarded when McCambridge walked the ball around a trio of opponents and shot for goal, Ward saving but failing to hold and McCambridge got the ball clear in the melee and netted. From this up to the end of the game lost nothing in interest. Another goal seemed certain when Clarke again centred, but Shiels, who was limping from an injury, lifted the ball over the bar.

Match report written by Ballymena Observer (30 November 1928)



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