THE HISTORY OF WIMBLEDON FOOTBALL CLUB
1949
Saturday, 27 August 1949
Isthmian League
 
Ilford
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1 - 3
Wimbledon
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Jack Haydock was back between the sticks, so it was essentially “the best of 1948/49” that made the trip to Newbury Park to take on a young Ilford side containing five new local youngsters on the opening day.

The energetic opposition forced the Dons onto the back foot early on and Ken Lister was repeatedly forced to pass back to Jack Haydock, on one occasion hitting it so hard that the keeper was forced to back-pedal and push the ball over the bar. Haydock then got in the way of a pile-driver from Cooper, but the ball twisted loose and a full-back was on hand to kick the ball off the line. Harry Stannard was well marshalled and forced to drift along the front line to find space, finding himself wide right to receive a pass from Jim Smith, as he evaded a defender the referee blew his whistle, then waved play on, and his cross found Vic Bird whose low, hard shot was only partially cleared and Jack Wallis fired it back in at goal, but Cox, in goal, stuck out a foot and deflected the ball wide for a corner. With the interval fast approaching Freddie Gauntlett switched the ball to the opposite wing and when the ball was put back into the middle he in the right place to hook the ball into the net over the head of the keeper to put Wimbledon a goal up. Ilford fought back and Alec Smith tested Haydock from close range before putting in a cross that White could only head into the hands of a grateful goalie.

Wimbledon was at their best at the start of the second-half and the result was two goals in as many minutes. A swift passing movement along the forward line set up Stannard who switched the ball to his left, tricked the full-back and shot against the post. Cox dived to gather the rebound but Stannard was following up and tapped the ball into an empty net. A minute later another passing move ended with Gauntlett again hooking the ball into goal. Ilford’s goal came on the hour when White converted Alec Smith’s corner, but it proved no more than a consolation.