By profitable the Devon Junior Cup in 1895, Sidmouth turned a Senior Membership, and now turned eligible to enter for the Senior Cup, which they did.
At the moment, the choice to participate in a county cup competitors was not easy. There have been monetary implications as a membership’s solely revenue was from gate receipts and subscriptions. Additionally, there have been logistical points, significantly in a county the dimensions of Devon.
This was the age earlier than motor transport. The event of mass-participation sport turned attainable due to introduction of the railway system. Whereas this enabled lengthy distance journey, a journey trusted the timetable and the variety of adjustments at department strains concerned.
Within the 1895-96 season, eight groups entered for the Senior Cup: Dartmouth, Devonport Albion ‘A’, Exeter Oaks, Exmouth, Paignton, Plymouth, Sidmouth and Totnes. The format was a straight league competitors with matches dwelling and away.
Sidmouth had been in rivalry all through, however Devonport Albion turned favourites after they received on the Blackmore in February. Nevertheless, Albion’s surprising defeat at Exmouth, opened the best way for Sidmouth. A victory of their return sport at Devonport would win the cup.
The sport was performed on Saturday, March 28, with Devonport sturdy favourites enjoying in entrance of an enormous crowd of dwelling supporters. When Sidmouth failed to attain within the first half, enjoying with a robust wind of their favour, the bookies odds shortened.
Sidmouth raised their sport within the second half. They defended beautifully and stretched the house aspect on the occasional breakaway. Within the closing minutes, Sammy Skinner kicked a drop purpose to win the sport and make Sidmouth the one crew ever to win the Junior and Senior cups in successive seasons.
The next season, Sidmouth defended the cup however this time solely six groups had been entered. The format was a league with the highest 4 groups then enjoying off in a knock-out. Sidmouth completed second to Exeter Oaks and had been drawn in opposition to them within the semi-final. The match was performed at Exmouth, with Sidmouth profitable by a purpose and a attempt to nil.
The ultimate in opposition to Totnes, performed on the County Floor, was a dour affair with each aspect failing to rise to the event. As soon as once more Sammy Skinner supplied the one rating of the sport with a penalty purpose.
On their return dwelling, the crew had been greeted with the normal torchlight procession to the Anchor Inn led by the band.
It was one other 33 years earlier than they’d attain the ultimate once more. Having been dropping semi-finalist 5 instances through the Twenties, they travelled to Torquay to play Brixham within the last on March 29, 1930.
Brixham’s sturdy pack made them favourites however, on the day, the Sidmouth forwards matched them effectively. Scrum half Arthur Bagwell had an excellent sport, because the match report famous, he ‘appeared to have a hand in each motion’.
Fly half Chip Mortimore was additionally influential and centre George Carter made a number of vital tackles. Brixham utilized early strain after full again Bunny Palmer was compelled to concede a five-metre scrum however good work by the Sidmouth forwards cleared the hazard.
Regardless of the rain, the Sidmouth backs posed a risk as they moved the ball into the open. Thrice speedy winger Mossy Turner was tackled into contact simply wanting the road and the rating remained 0-0 at half time.
Sidmouth took management for a lot of the second half. Each Turner and fellow wing Snip Courtney got here near scoring earlier than Bagwell dispossessed his reverse quantity at a scrum and Bert Welsman dribbled on the unfastened ball earlier than kicking it over the road for Turner to win the chase and contact down a decisive attempt.
In direction of the top, Sidmouth produced the very best dealing with transfer of the match, which ended with Turner diving over within the nook however there had been a foot in contact.
Sidmouth held on to the three-point lead and arrived dwelling to get pleasure from a torchlight procession, this time to the brand new HQ on the Industrial Lodge (now the Black Horse).