With thanks to Richie Greenfield for providing us with his all time eleven.
Back in January 1996 we played host to tonight’s opponents in the Fourth Round of the F.A. Vase. Aveley, under manager Craig Johnson, were then a mid-table side in the Third Division of the Isthmian League, whilst Steve Dowman’s Dragons sat in sixth position in the Second Division of the same League. We were unbeaten at home in the League and scoring goals for fun – twenty-one in the five home games at Broad Lane prior to this tie. John Kemp, Julian Hazel, Justin Booty, Lee Neale and Steve Henson leading the goal feast. Victories at Wisbech Town (3-2) and here against Edgware Town (3-1) in previous rounds had set up the Aveley encounter, which eventually Wivenhoe won quite comfortably 4-0 in front of a crowd of 301. Hitting the back of the net that afternoon were Julian Hazel (twice), Steve Henson and John Kemp. A repeat of that score-line tonight is probably a little too much to ask ! We went onto face Mangotsfield United, from the Western League Premier Division, in the Fifth Round of the competition – which is another story. Interesting to see that the price of our programmes has only gone up 20p in nearly twenty years !
With thanks to Dragons SOB of many years Mr Steve Blyth for providing us with his all time eleven;
1 – Lloyd Pentney
2 – Mickey Cook
3 – Joff March
4 – Gary Hudson
5 – John Lacy
6 – Lil Fuccillo
7 – Phil Coleman
8 – Paul Price
9 – Steve Clarke
10 – Julian Hazel
11 – Paul Harrison
GK – Gerry Warner
Mark Dadds (LOL)
With thanks to Julian for getting in touch to provide his thoughts on his all time eleven (and subs of course!). We’d lover to hear from any ex-dragons; players, management or supporters with yours.
Julian Hazel’s All Time x1
Well my time as player and manager has been nothing but total fun,love,passion and real. .I have the best memories and friends from and still at Wivenhoe and it was all a big part of my life.
I will pick my favourite team with difficulty but truth be told I base most of my decisions on players who had the same passion and win at all costs attitude. To many of the Clubs we played against, they saw us (wivenhoe) as a little village team who could be intimidated before the whistle was even blowed………………….….VERY WRONG!!! It spurred me and the players whom I’ve picked on, to maybe not always win, but to make sure they knew Wivenhoe town F.C was no push over village team!!!!!
Goal keeper….Lloyd pentley
Right back….lee Abrehart
Left back…Joff March
Centre half…Gary Hudson
Centre half…Phil Colman
Left wing/left back…Robbie May
Right wing…Danny Roberts
Central mid….Wayne hannigan
Central mid…Mitchell Springett
Centre forward….Alan Day
Centre forward…john Kemp
That completes my choice and I could of put 8-10 players in each of those positions!!!!
Miss and love the Dragons always.
For a bit of fun we thought it would be interesting to give Wivenhoe Town fans the chance to put forward their “All Time” team. If you would like to submit your favourite XI onto the site please do not hesitate to email us on firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear from you. JB kicks things off with his selection (plus substitutes)
“Lining up in a 4-4-2 formation, in their prime I would back this side to give a good account of itself as high as the Isthmian League Premier Division with goals from all over the pitch plus defensive strength while including enough characters who could go to war with the opposition if needed.”
1 GERRY WARNER
(Holder of the club’s Senior ” shut out” record and a regular saver of penalties)
2 KEITH BAIN
(Terrific pace and could operate as a “wing back” long before the position became common place in the game. Also able to play on the wing or as a forward)
3 GARY SMITH
(Consistent performer at left back/midfield at Essex Senior League and Isthmian League level)
4 PHIL COLEMAN
(Tough and battling with a touch of class and able to score plenty of goals from set pieces and corners)
5 GARY HUDSON
(Defensive powerhouse and a real leader on the pitch)
6 CHRIS DINES
(Skilful and positive, a match winner on his day who always chipped in with important goals)
7 MITCHELL SPRINGETT
(Playmaker with long and short range passing that could unlock even the best defences. Also a lethal free kick specialist)
8 TABANI MABVURA
(Class as a defensive midfielder or in the back line. Retired far too early)
9 PAUL HARRISON
(Prolific scorer. 258 Dragons goals. Enough said)
10 STEVE CLARK
(Hard working and able to net 20 plus goals a season)
11 JIMMY KING
(Outstanding left sided player. A bag of tricks and the source of constant chances set up for the strikers)
12 JULIAN HAZEL
(Powerful striker, a real handful for any defence. A Dragons legend)
14 KEVIN HUGHES
(Solid central defender, good in the air and could play a bit as well)
15 PAUL PRICE
(Ex-Pro know how made him too good for the majority of the opposition)
16 LEE NEALE
(Skilful midfielder with an almost 1 in 3 strike rate and able to operate in a defensive role)
17 STEPHEN HENSON
(Hard working 90 minute box to box midfielder who netted vital goals)
Having previously played for West Bergholt in the Essex & Suffolk Border League Scott was signed by Steve Dowman from Clacton Town and exploded onto the Wivenhoe scene in spectacular fashion on his debut at Worthing on Saturday 5th November 1994 in an Isthmian League First Division match. Having produced an assured performance in our midfield for 60 minutes he was sent off for attempting to assassinate a home player who had pissed him off and was promptly suspended for three games. Having picked up a caution in his first match back following his ban for a “robust” challenge in a superb 2-1 victory at Billericay Town, the Boxing day derby against Heybridge Swifts was next up on the agenda. Scott interrupted a Christmas break in Scotland and travelled back to play only to be rewarded with two dubious cautions resulting in a 56th minute dismissal. Obviously disgusted with it all Scott marched menacingly from the pitch, jumped over the surround wall….and landed straight into one of the large plastic dustbins on the terrace !!. Thus, as the “SOBS” hoots of laughter echoed around Broad Lane, the legend of “Dusty” was born (this nickname coming from the Dusty Bin character from the old “3…2…1” game show).
“Dusty” became a firm favourite of the “SOBS” and the Fanzine “Look For Floodlights” bestowed upon him his own logo as well as regularly paying tribute to this Dragons hero’s antics. Scott’s Wivenhoe career was unfortunately blighted by injury as well as enforced “lay offs” courtesy of the Essex County Football Association (rumour has it that he gleaned more bookings than Butlins during his first season with us !) all of which combined to result in him making considerably less appearances (77 in total) than he would normally have done over his near three year association with the Dragons.
Although making several appearances at left back, “Dusty” was really at his best in our midfield where his vision and passing ability always made him able to produce that killer pass to open up an opposing defence while at the same time also being able to be combative in a midfield battle. Although never afraid to have a “pop” at goal, Scott was hardly what you could term as “prolific”, however, there were a couple of real crackers amongst the six goals he did score, the thunderous effort at Billericay in the Essex Senior Cup especially standing out in the memory and sparking his “3…2…1” goal celebration. In addition to his outfield duties “Dusty” also made one full First Team appearance as goalkeeper. That occasion came on Saturday 20th April 1996 when both of the club’s custodians were unavailable for a home league game against Hungerford Town and Scott very nearly crowned a good performance with a clean sheet as the visitors only managed to beat him for their consolation goal in a 3-1 win with the last kick of the match.
With his aforementioned run-ins with match Officials it was only fitting that the “SOBS” made him guest referee for a supporters game against Billericay working on the theory that he wouldn’t dare book anyone after some of the things we had witnessed him do on the pitch !!. Scott’s last First team appearance came on Tuesday 9th September 1997 in a 0-2 home League Cup defeat at the hands of Purfleet when he looked the best player on the night. His very last game in a Wivenhoe Town shirt came on Saturday 4th October 1997 in a 4-0 Essex & Suffolk Border League victory for the Reserves over Weeley Athletic Reserves before he departed Broad Lane to link up with Gas Recreation. A popular player who really made an impression with the Dragons fans, by way of tribute, reproduced below from Issue 42 of “Floodlights” is a referee’s view of the day he leapt into the Wivenhoe Town Hall Of Fame.
(Click and zoom the below to read the feature taken from ‘Look for floodlights’)
Below is a genuine “dusty” caution (worth nothing unless you have the rest of the collection). We have protected the identity of the match official just in case Scott still bears a grudge after all these years. This particular booking goes to show that the “magic sponge” really does work.
(Click and zoom to read the above, which is part o a referee’s report in regards to ‘one’ of Scott’s bookings)
Wivenhoe Town 1994/95
Back: (L to R) Elliot Davidson, Steve Dowman (Player/Manager) Barry Wreford (Physio)
Middle: Arthur Wenborn (Assistant Manager), Bruce Reid, Christian Davies, Kevin Foskett, Kieran Johnson, Steve Howe, Carl Kick, Christian Fordred, Christian McLean, Scott Juniper.
Front: Robbie Quinnell, Scott McKillop, Mark Hewitson, David Gray.