The William “Tiddler” Forbes story continues with a photo surfacing of the player.
Andy Malone, from the committee of East Craigie JFC, sent in a team photo, which has been “hanging in the clubrooms”.
He opened: “This is in relation to your story about William ‘Tiddler’ Forbes and it is a photo of him taken from the Shipbuilders side in season 1926-27.”
Andy added: “Also in the photo is Jimmy Easson in what was possibly the most successful East Craigie team ever, winning lots of trophies between 1925 and 1934 and losing out on a place in the final of the Scottish Junior Cup due to an unsigned player being played.”
I sent the photo to Rob Boag in Canada – the author of the original Tiddler tale – and he was delighted to receive it.
Rob, in his inimitable way, responded: “It is 1956, it is early Saturday afternoon in a Hawkhill pub.
“Two journeymen of the time claim that the greatest Dundee Junior football player they ever saw was Tiddler Forbes.
“It is now 2020, it is late Wednesday afternoon in my Canadian home and I am looking at an email from BwB with an attached framed photo of East Craigie FC, winners of the 1926-27 Kiddie Charity Cup.
“In the front of the line-up is Tiddler Forbes.
“Over these decades, I began to suspect this name was a fabrication of my imagination.
“So it has taken just 64 years for me to find out that ‘Tiddler’, indeed, was not that figment.”
Rob also replied to a previous article on Tiddler, continuing: “I enjoyed Jim Skelly’s informative story in BwB (May 30) on Tiddler – who is his uncle.
“However, in his closing statement, Jim left me in awe and frustration with his throwaway comment: ‘We also have another famous uncle, none other than Jimmy McGrory’.
“You can’t do that, Jim, you can’t tease us with that.
“You must now offer an anecdote, a morsel, a crumb or titbit of a story about the legendary (a word that is overused these days, but when it comes to McGrory, it is most appropriate) Celtic forward.
“I believe the famous Celtic player (and manager for 20 years) is Scotland’s most prolific goal-scorer with nearly 500 goals – and 55 hat-tricks sprinkled amongst them.
“Football fans from father’s generation spoke almost with reverence about the accomplishments of the great man.
“As a youth, I remember pals would attempt to emulate McGrory’s famous diving bullet headers.
“As a follower of BwB, Jim, you understand the enjoyment and satisfaction fellow readers receive from good sports stories.
“Can you share a reminiscence with us about the great Jimmy McGrory?”
I was alerted to this photo of Downfield JFC photo from the late 1980s by Richard Price, younger brother of Roy, who is one of the players in the photo.
Richard describes this side as: “The best side in the history of Tayside junior football.
“This side won three consecutive league titles and only lost the fourth on goal difference.
“Coincidentally, the photo shows my two all-time favourite Downfield kits – including the ‘Dennis the Menace’ QPR-style away.”
Back row (from left) – Jimmy McMulkin, Greig Walker, Roy Price, Grant Clark, Andy Somerville, Mark Spalding.
Front row – Kevin Thoms, Davie Anderson, John Young, Jimmy Hunter, Bryan Peacock, Gordon Jack, Dave Baikie, John Ruddie, Grant Nisbet.
Richard concluded: “Davie Anderson is also the greatest ever Spiders player.”
I first came across Willie Lawson at the age of 15.
And it was a close encounter of the unreal kind. As I often did, I popped along to see a late-season midweek junior match.
This particular one was between hosts Broughty Athletic and Carnoustie Panmure at Claypotts Park (now Whitton Park).
On entering, I heard the cry from a committee member: “John, what size of boots do you wear?
“We are short of players and need you to play right-back.”
In awe, sitting in the home dressing-room with Fed legends such as Billy Britton, Graeme Irons, Willie McKenzie, Stewart Westhall and others, I couldn’t help but notice their collective smirk.
Eventually, they asked if I knew who I would be directly up against. When I said no, I was told it was Willie Lawson, who not long ago had signed for Carnoustie after leaving Sheffield Wednesday!
Indeed, one of the finest players the city had produced at that time.
Willie, perhaps, took pit on his fledgling opposition that evening as I don’t really recall getting a ‘doing’. The game, I believe, finished 1-1.
Sadly, Willie recently passed away. The news came to me from his good friend Dave Tosney.
Willie also had a spell with Brechin City, among others.
Elizabeth Pryde was another who responded to the Gellatly Street FC photograph, which appeared on June 27.
Elizabeth, of St Mary’s in Dundee, said: “My information is slight, but the photo I think would have been about 1955.
“Bruce Ogilvie (above), who was in the team photo, was best man at my wedding in 1957, and he lived in Gellatly Street. His son or family member may be able to help you with details of the games.
“My husband Ian Pryde (not in the photo) played for this team before moving to Craigie Celtic.
“Some years ago, a chance conversation with a friend (Jessie Stewart) led to her father Jimmer Donaldson meeting up with my husband in the Dundee Club to reminisce about football.
“They shared laughter, friendship and memories. I thought him to be a former manager or trainer.
“Jimmer died about November 2008, the same year as my husband.
“Having overheard part of their conversations, it seemed as if the venues were mainly local and the Coup (Riverside) was often mentioned.”
Football players, managers and staff are always sought for quotes by the media.
I’m continuing to share some of them with you, which are associated with the Scotland national team.
Scotland’s ‘reputation’, perhaps, preceded them heading to the 1974 World Cup Finals in West Germany.
So much so that Brazil boss Mario Zagallo said: “The Scots are a hard team and play with excessive violence.”