Championship memories with Dunkeswell Rovers
- Credit: Archant
In the continued absence of local sport, it is worth remembering some of the wonderful success enjoyed by our clubs over recent years.
Dunkeswell Rovers celebrated their latest moment in the sun in 2019, winning Division Five of the Devon and Exeter League.
After a long hard season, the Villagers set themselves up for an exciting climax by winning 2-1 at Culm United in a Bank Holiday showdown, when Rovers recovered from a goal down to secure three points via a Steve Morris free-kick and a late own goal.
It was then on to a game with title rivals Exmouth Spartans and the challenge ahead was very simple for Dunkeswell – anything less than a win would hand the Division Five crown to their hosts.
The Villagers rose to their task in brilliant fashion, winning 2-0 on the day, with goals from Jacob Cobb White and Tom Cligg.
One more challenge lay ahead for Rovers, as they still needed to beat Willand-based Bravehearts on the final day to confirm the title.
Unfortunately, the visitors failed to raise a team for the finale and the trophy was won through a walkover but even this anti-climax could not detract from a marvelous achievement.
Joint-manager Brian Cann was full of praise for his heroic players.
"If I was to have to put our success down to one particular thing then it would be 'the dressing room'," he said. "We made a conscious decision in pre-season to look to see if we could out together a squad of local lads and the first thing we did was recruit three players from Upottery, Tom Cligg, Gavin Richards and Steve Morris, all of whom are Dunkeswell lads and the die was cast for a seriously 'together' dressing room.
"The club so nearly actually went out of business during last summer, but once the decision had been taken to give it another go, it did not take too many conversations between Sid [Berry] and I, to agree to take it on!”
It was a special season for Dunkeswell Rovers and we look back with fondness on scenes that will hopefully be repeated again very soon.