6th October 1965
Mob Beats Policemen to Death After Crash
At least 150 people were killed last night when a crowded train was derailed on the outskirts of Durban, South Africa.
The accident occurred when 3 coaches of a train taking labourers home from work left the rails.
Seconds after the crash, an incensed mob of Africans attacked two white railwaymen who had arrived at the scene, battering one of them to death.
The Ryder Cup
The latest meeting of the sides in this bi-ennial competition began at Royal Birkdale, where the GB and Ireland team was captained by Harry Weetman and the USA one by Byron Nelson. At the end of the first day of foursomes, the teams were tied at 4-4.
On the previous evening, several matches involving British sides had taken place;-
European Cup Preliminary Round Second Leg
Manchester United 6 Helsinki 0 Aggregate 9-2
Fairs Cup 1st Round 2nd Leg
Glentoran 3 Royal Antwerp 3 Agg 3-4
Roma 0 Chelsea 0 Agg 1-4
Torino 0 Leeds United 0 Agg 1-2
The previous Saturday, while the reserves had been drawing with Motherwell at Parkhead, I had been part of the official party as Celtic took on Hibs in the League Cup semi-final at Ibrox. As I had done for the league match between these two sides at the same venue, I had made my way across the city to Celtic Park, then travelled by bus to Ibrox with the rest of the players, directors and staff.
To be dead honest, to do a trip like that was exhilarating stuff! And what an exciting match it was, Celtic getting the equaliser in the final minute to put the game into extra-time. It also gave me a close-up of what playing at that level was like and how not every player was comfortable with having to perform for an extra 30 minutes.
Because of the return leg of the Cup-Winners’ tie against Go- Ahead Deventer taking place on the 7th October – a Tuesday evening – there was no training at night in the early part of that week, as obviously the inside of the ground that was used most often – the foyer and dressing rooms – had to look in pristine shape for the encounter.
However, on the Sunday evening, the phone rang in my parents’ house and my Mum went out into the hall to answer it [phones in those days were at a fixed point]. After a few minutes she came back in again and said “Jim, that nice man Sean Fallon is on the phone for you”. As I went out to the hall, part of me was thinking ‘what about that Sean Fallon, using his Irish gift of the gab to sweet-talk my Mum!’ and the other half was wondering ‘what the blazes did he want to talk to me about on a Sunday night?’
Well, he gave me a real surprise, asking me – and he said he realised that it a big ask – if I could possibly come to training on the Monday morning. It would only be for a light session and I could get back to the Dental Hospital pretty quickly afterwards; he even said someone would drive me there. I was surprised but said that I would be there and then spent a lot of the night wondering just what was going on.
Anyway, on the Monday morning – and here I use a technical word – I ‘dogged’ my first couple of lectures, made my way by bus out to Celtic Park and took part in what was indeed a light session, which consisted of some trackwork and some small-sided games behind one of the goals. However, as I was making my way towards the tunnel after the session, Jock Stein approached, took my arm and led me a little distance away from the others. He then told me that I would be playing the following night against Go-Ahead Deventer in the return leg and that I was to make sure that I ate well all day, especially some form of pre-match meal at a suitable time before kick-off.
To say I was pleased was an understatement. Frankly, I was over the moon. However, reality soon kicked in and I realised that I was now in a difficult spot. At that time, I was just over halfway through my 4th year of the 5-year dental course. We had lectures right through the morning and we saw patients every afternoon. To get to the match, I would need to leave the Dental Hospital around 4pm (just to allow for any traffic problems), so anybody booked in after that would need to be cancelled. And as for getting some form of pre-match meal around that time – or slightly later – that was going to be difficult, if not impossible. Still, I had been pushing for my chance for some time and it had now arrived, so I just shrugged my shoulders and approached the receptionists and cooks on the hospital staff, trying to use whatever charm I had to get them on board for assistance. Fortunately, they turned out to be very helpful.
When I bought an evening paper on my way home that night – and it was true of the daily ones the following morning – the sports pages were almost dismissive of the match, saying that the Dutch side had no chance and that they expected Celtic to score another ‘barrowload’ of goals, There was no mention of my appearance but I reckoned that was a case of Jock Stein not wanting to put any pressure on me.
When I told my parents, Dad was very pleased while Mum, as usual, told me to ‘watch out for any bigger boys who could do me some damage’. In her eyes, I was still about 10 years of age! That evening, I tried to do some work but, as you can imagine, my mind was elsewhere. Eventually, I went to bed but found that every time I was about to drop off, a piece of action from a football match flashed into my mind, always one where I was making a total mess of something! It was quite a night!
In the second day of the Ryder Cup, the four-balls had finished 4-2 to the USA, making the score after two days USA 8 GB and Ireland 6.