THE VIC MORGAN COLUMN: What makes a magic strike partnership? (From The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald)
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THE VIC MORGAN COLUMN: What makes a magic strike partnership?
6:00am Thursday 6th December 2012 in Sport
THANK goodness it's back. Saturday is not the same without that anticipation of watching the Town. It's been a long two weeks hasn't it?
After our mini mid-season break it’s back to the County Ground for the visit of Doncaster Rovers.
Donny just happen to be the current club of one William Paynter - a forward you might recall plied his trade at SN1 a couple of years back.
During his spell in Wiltshire he formed a couple of notable striking partnerships. Paynter-Cox and Paynter-Austin were quite decent combinations, I thought. That got me thinking, yes it’s been a long two weeks, of great striking duos in Swindon colours over the years.
I guess there are some that immediately spring to mind. The likes of White and Shearer, Parkin and Mooney and of course Mayes and Rowland.
What it is that makes two players hit it off in the goalscoring stakes is one of football's great unknowns. It either works or it doesn't. There are some partnerships that you think are bound to provide goals but somehow fail to deliver.
Another aspect is what kind of combination works. The classic would be the big man-small man partnership. A knockdown from the big fella to the little guy, who dispatches it into the net. Simple isn't it?
When it does work it’s worth its weight in goals (and gold). Over the years at Swindon there have been many as well as some who perhaps haven't quite lived up to the billing.
One pair that did hit the mark featured in one of the most exhilarating years I can remember.
Alan Mayes and Andy Rowland were as good as it gets at Third Division level, netting more than 50 goals between them in the 1979-80 campaign. They were part of a side which reached a League Cup semi-final and should have won promotion.
Maybe exhaustion just caught up with them, as there was no squad rotation in those days. It was a glorious team during that time, full of solid professionals who seemed to reach their collective peaks under Bobby Smith.
The magic of the nights when Arsenal were held at Highbury and then beaten at the County Ground will never be forgotten by those who were there. That, by the way, happened 33 years ago this week. It seems like yesterday.
Those great occasions sandwiched an eight-nil win over Bury. The anniversary of that memorable home win is this Saturday. Would it perhaps be a little much to ask for a repeat on this December 8?
I guess the answer to the conundrum is a partnership just works. There’s no easy answer, it comes about because of an unknown factor containing a little bit of magic. Oh, and a lot of hard graft.
A real test for the Town against high flying Donny then. I'm glad it’s back, aren't you?