The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO RESULTS - By Neil Fissler

WAYNE JONES ad­mits that ev­ery one of his six sea­sons at Bris­tol Rovers ap­peared to fea­ture some­thing news­wor­thy, ei­ther pro­mo­tion, a near-miss or suc­cess in cup com­pe­ti­tions.

He was tipped for big things just af­ter break­ing into the Gas’ first team be­fore he had even cel­e­brated his 18th birth­day.

Jones, a highly-tal­ented in­sid­e­for­ward, helped the club fin­ish third in Divi­sion Three in 1970 and, within a year, he was win­ning his only Wales cap.

He played a lead­ing role in help­ing the club reach the quar­ter-fi­nals of the League Cup, just months be­fore his chance on the in­ter­na­tional stage.

Jones also helped the club win the Wat­ney Cup in 1972, be­fore a knee in­jury cut short his promis­ing ca­reer in De­cem­ber 1972, only two months af­ter his 24th birth­day.

He can­not, how­ever, put his fin­ger on why they missed out to Ori­ent and Lu­ton Town af­ter ap­pear­ing to col­lapse in the runin when pro­mo­tion was well within their reach.

Iron­i­cally, in the sea­son af­ter he re­tired, 1973-74, they did man­age to win pro­mo­tion on goal dif­fer­ence from York, fin­ish­ing a point be­hind cham­pi­ons Old­ham Ath­letic.“I joined the club at 17 and only played for Bris­tol Rovers,” he said.

“I re­ally en­joyed it. Look­ing back, I was that young I didn’t re­ally know any­thing else.

“Even if we were fourth or fifth bot­tom ev­ery year, I would have en­joyed it. A young lad from south Wales couldn’t have helped but en­joy it, what­ever hap­pened with the re­sults.

“I had to fin­ish at 24, so I had only six or seven years as a player, but they were quite event­ful. I re­mem­ber some of the cup runs we had were spe­cial.


“We were al­ways there or there­abouts in the league, so we were quite suc­cess­ful, but the cup runs prob­a­bly masked the fact we couldn’t get pro­mo­tion.

“It is hard to say why we didn’t get pro­moted.We changed man­agers a cou­ple of times and it wasn’t un­til 1974 that we did get pro­mo­tion with Don Meg­son as man­ager.

“I don’t think you could put your fin­ger on any in­di­vid­ual per­son or any one thing.

“It was just one of those things that we missed out in a few years.

“In the first sea­son I was at the club, in 1967, we went to Wat­ford ei­ther for the last game of the sea­son or very late on, need­ing to win.

“We went 1-0 up and end­ing up los­ing 2-1 or 3-1.

“Wat­ford, I think, fin­ished third that sea­son and we just missed out, so we had some very close en­coun­ters.

“But some­times that hap­pens, doesn’t it? But it is all a long time ago, so I can­not re­mem­ber ex­actly why we didn’t go up.” 1. Stu­art Tay­lor. A cen­tral de­fender who man­aged Bath City and worked as a plumber be­fore run­ning a pub, the Beau­fort Hunt, in Down End, Bris­tol. 2. Dick Shep­pard. A goal­keeper who joined a light in­dus­trial com­pany in Bris­tol and then coached the Rovers goal­keep­ers. He was work­ing for a dou­ble glaz­ing firm when he died in Oc­to­ber 1998, aged 53. 3. Alex Munro. Fin­ished his ca­reer as a left-back in South Africa, where he worked as a sales rep­re­sen­ta­tive, but he re­tired to St Austell, Corn­wall, two years be­fore his death in May 2009, aged 64. 4. Tom Stan­ton. A full-back who started an an­tiques busi­ness in Bris­tol and then coached the Rovers youth team be­fore work­ing for a Bris­tol ex­ec­u­tive re­cruit­ment com­pany. 5. Lau­rie Tay­lor. The goal­keeper man­aged a sports shop in his na­tive Ex­eter, be­fore be­com­ing a book­maker and then a post­man in Cred­i­ton, Devon 6. Robin Stubbs. Cen­tre-for­ward was mar­ried to Gen­er­a­tion Game host­ess Anthea Red­fern. He set­tled in Torquay and was a sales­man, sell­ing plas­tic and pa­per, un­til re­tir­ing. 7. Bobby Camp­bell. The for­mer Dum­bar­ton, Rovers and Glouces­ter man­ager set­tled in Bris­tol and scouted for the club. He died in May 2009, aged 86. 8. Bobby Jones. The for­mer striker went into man­age­ment and coach­ing lo­cally with a va­ri­ety of posts. He took Bath City into the Con­fer­ence and is now re­tired. 9. Ken Ron­ald­son. An in­sid­e­for­ward who was a for­mer elec­tri­cal en­gi­neer. He set­tled in Kent where he be­came a po­lice­man for many years un­til re­tir­ing for a se­cond time. 10. Lind­say Par­sons. A full­back who started his man­age­ment ca­reer with the Rovers youth team. He went on to man­age Chel­tenham Town and has worked closely with Tony Pulis, act­ing as Stoke’s chief scout. 11. Johnny Petts. A wing-half who, af­ter a spell coach­ing and man­ag­ing Northamp­ton, be­came a driver for Flair Print­ing in the town. His son, Paul, also played for Rovers. 12. Bryn Jones. A mid­fielder who set­tled in Yeovil, where he ended his play­ing ca­reer and went to work for the big­gest em­ployer in the area, West­lands, but has now re­tired to We­ston-Su­per-Mare. 13. Gor­don Mars­land. A left­half who be­came a sales­man in the mo­tor trade, be­fore work­ing as a sport sales agent in the North West un­til his death in Jan­uary 2009 aged 63. 14. Bill Dod­gin. Af­ter step­ping down as man­ager in 1972, he re­verted to his pre­vi­ous role as chief scout un­til he re­tired in 1983. He lived in Gateshead un­til his death in Oc­to­ber 1999, aged 90. 15. Ray Gray­don.





















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