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Ardrossan Academy sports team pictures and others: session 1956-57

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:52 pm
by down south
Proceeding with the latest batch of sports team photos from Ardrossan Academy, we come to session 1956-57. And here to begin with as usual are the ones for hockey and rugby.

Ardrossan Academy hockey team session 1956-57.jpg

Ardrossan Academy rugby team session 1956-57.jpg


Re: Ardrossan Academy sports team pictures: session 1956-57

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2016 6:32 pm
by Retsum
There are still at least two guys in the lineup that I just do not remember.

Stephen Wright is repeating the sixth form and so retains the captaincy which would otherwise have gone to Dick McConnachie.

I do remember that this was a very successful season: at one point we were on course for a clean sweep, then towards the end of the season we suffered two defeats. One was to the 'auld enemy' Ayr Academy (3-0) and that was fair enough - sometimes we won, sometimes they won but it was always close and enjoyable.

The other defeat still rankles after all these years. It was a school just starting to play rugby - Dalry. Because they were new they were having difficulty getting fixtures. After an approach to Tommy Hughes we agreed to play them at their ground. It was the custom for the home side to provide the referee but their PE teacher was unavailable and so they had persuaded a geography teacher to do the job. He turned out to be a disaster.

There was a strategy I had first seen used by Scotland's stand-off at one of the Murrayfield internationals. The scenario is this. Scotland are in the opposition's half of the field and there is a scrum with our put-in, so the assumption is that we are going to win the ball which will be passed rapidly from scrum-half to stand-off. In that situation the opposition three-quarters would usually lie up i.e. they would form a straight line from just behind the scrum out to either touch line. They then have the minimum distance to run to put in tackles and our stand-off has a minimum of attacking choices. What he did was to kick the ball over the heads of the opposition with just the right weight of kick for our winger to run forward, collect the ball and touch down for a try. It was brilliant and I decided to adopt the strategy when appropriate.

I practised it with our most experienced and fastest winger - Willie Park. There are two critical conditions. The winger has to be behind the kicker when he kicks the ball. He is then on-side and can run forward, ahead of the kicker and play the ball. The other critical element is the weight of kick and the angle. I wanted the ball to arrive at shoulder height in the space that Willie was running into so that he could simply collect it without breaking stride and carry on down the touch line for a try. We had used the technique successfully on a number of occasions throughout the season.

The first time we tried it at Dalry the referee blew for off-side. O.K. I thought, maybe Willie had been over enthusiastic and got ahead of me when I kicked the ball. But the second time we tried it, Willie was definitely behind me but the ref. still blew for off-side and came over to me and threatened to send me off if I did it again! In those days you could not ask the ref. for an explanation, far less challenge it. I was stunned and angry. We all knew he was wrong and just did not understand the off-side law.

After the game we wanted to leave an open copy of the laws for him to see but Tommy overruled us and said he would deal with it. I don't know if he did.

Another memory from this season is that I often played two games on a Saturday. If the school had a home match in the morning I often played for the Accies in the afternoon - usually for the 3rd XV, sometimes for the 2nd XV and rarely for the 1st XV. Running three teams, as the Accies did, was often a problem, particularly if all three had a fixture on the same day and it was not unknown for a team to 'borrow' a member of the opposition and play 14-a-side!

Re: Ardrossan Academy sports team pictures: session 1956-57

Posted: Fri Jan 15, 2016 11:52 am
by Hughie
Great to get your feedback, Retsum. loving your input, Susan.

Re: Ardrossan Academy sports team pictures: session 1956-57

Posted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 4:13 pm
by down south
I see from the report in the school magazine that you were also among those selected to play for Ayrshire Schools that season, Graham; well done on that.

And now to proceed with the other team photos from 1956-57; cricket, tennis and golf.

Ardrossan Academy cricket team session 1956-57.jpg
Ardrossan Academy tennis team session 1956-57.jpg
Ardrossan Academy golf team session 1956-57.jpg


Re: Ardrossan Academy sports team pictures and others: session 1956-57

Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2018 3:25 pm
by down south
Here are some additional pictures from the school magazine of that year; portraits of pupils done by the art students. Most of them are self-portraits, as are these two by Anne Westwater:

Anne Westwater self-portrait 1957.jpg

And Hector Lee :

Hector Lee self-portrait 1957.jpg

We've seen artworks in this style by these two before : Anne Westwater's can be seen here ; Hector Lee's, here and here .


Re: Ardrossan Academy sports team pictures and others: session 1956-57

Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 3:28 pm
by down south
Two more of these. A self-portrait by Sally Munro, whose other artwork can be seen here :

Sally Munro self-portrait 1957.jpg

And a portrait of Anne Ritchie by Heather Ross :

Anne Ritchie by Heather Ross 1957.jpg