Hayling United now doing well in the Hampshire League were among the founders in the Portsmouth League.
They were famous over the years for the families that played for them, the Tamblings and Wrixons especially come to mind. Cyril, Dave and Ron Wrixon also gave Hayling sterling service.
Dave was the goalkeeper, although hankered to play outfield as most keepers do, they always seem to think they can be a centre forward. However, goalkeeper was his position for the first team and a competent one at that.
Cyril, who was also club secretary was an outfield player along with brother Ron. The Tambling family also provided Don the goalkeeper who went on to play for Havant Town, brothers Phil and Bobby who went to on to have a great career at Chelsea where his goalscoring prowess was only recently surpassed by Frank Lampard as the clubs leading goalscorer.
Bobby also had his sports shop in Havant by the train station which was managed by his brother Don and when he retired playing professionally he came back to manage Hayling for a season before moving over to Ireland.
Hayling won the Senior Division twice in the 80’s with players that included Pete King, Gordon Boniface a strong bustling forward, Ray Oakley was another goalscorer up front who also played for Tangiers United. John Simpson and Micky Hillman also gave good service.
I loved the story I read in a book by Nick Bettesworth about the history of Hayling FC which mentioned that Hayling had appointed a ‘foreign’ manager. It turned out to be Rod Sadler who came from Bedhampton where he played for many seasons.
Incidentally Nick’s father Tony had also played for Hayling back in the 60’s and I remember opposing him many times when I played for Havant United. In 1979 the manager Cyril Wrixon reported that the first team had ten local boys playing, the odd one out was Peter Hewett, with the second team consisting of all local lads.
The first team with Pete King the senior player at this time owed a lot of their success by switching Tommy Meehan from up front to midfield and the form of Simpson where they were able to exploit the devastating pace of winger Gamblin. Meehan was another product of the family connection as Norman and Tommy senior gave excellent service to the club.
It’s good to see this club still flourishing and now seem settled in their new home at Hayling College after the many heartaches they encountered in recent years.