Now that we are in the Season of Goodwill, I thought we would look back 50 years to Wednesday, 26 December, 1973.
Yes, it was Boxing Day, and Albion traditionally played Devon Buccaneers XV, a side raised by Plymouth College Teacher and former Albion Captain (1935-36) Ted Mercer.
Unfortunately, the weather prior to the Match had made the Beacon Park Pitch very muddy, especially in front of the main Grandstand. However astutely using the bad conditions to their advantage, Albion scored surprisingly freely to gain a 41-8 victory – one of their best of the season.
In contrast the Buccaneers could rarely harness their potential due to half-backs , Phil Treseder and Richard Prichard being unable to get their Backs into attacking positions. They did however score two first-class tries. Certainly, Albion’s man of the match was Les Ware, who produced excellence in both attack and defence. It was from a break by Ware that paved the way for Albion’s first try by Wing-Forward Richard Catchpole; by half-time Ware had kicked three penalties in the 25th, 27th and 30th minutes, putting Albion 15-0 in front at the interval.
At the start of the second-half, Scrum-Half Nick Vosper passed the Ball to Fly-Half Malcolm Shillabeer who dummied his way over, shortly after Wing Graham Angell scored a try for the visitors in the 56th minute.
A spate of scoring followed with Albion monopolising the forward possession. Wing John Stonehouse scored for Albion just after the hour mark and, six minutes later, Centre Paul Curtis’ score was converted by Les Ware.
Number 8 Jock Watt went over in the 70th minute, with Ware again converting. That came five minutes prior to a try by Roger Mossirh for the visitors.
The Bucaneers Team contained five former Albion Players – Jon Gabbitas, Peter Babb, Roger Morrish, Phill Treseder and John Edwards. Babb, son of Albion Chairman Perry, was a Plymouth College Old Boy along with his father.
- L.Ware. 14.J.Stonehouse. 13.R.Friend. 12.P.Curtis. 11.B.Attis. 10.M.Shillabeer. 9. N.Vosper.8. W.Watt.7. R.Jewell.6. R.Catchpole. M.Bickle.4. G.Lovell3. M.Treagust. 2.R.Bailey. 1.N.Redgrave.