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Ernest Peak’s Blackburn Rovers debut


March 27, 1908
Ernest Peake, Aberystwyth’s international half, having signed a Lancashire Combination form as an amateur for Blackburn Rovers, travelled about 400 miles last weekend to play for the Rovers in a Combination match at Haslingden.

The field at Haslingden was in a shocking state, especially in the centre where Ernest Peake had to play. This told a great deal against him and he could not possibly show his true form in displaying some of his pretty footwork he is so clever with.

Taken into consideration the long journey from Aberystwyth to Blackburn and then on to Haslingden, and also being slightly injured during the game, he played remarkably fine and out of the 6,000 people present on the ground there was not a single condemnatory voice raised as to Peake’s ability as a player.

Some of the older sportsmen waxed enthusiastic over him and all his movements were watched keenly throughout the game. The game was characterised as the “local Derby,” this being the first visit of the celebrated Rovers to Haslingden, and a record crowd was on the ground to witness what turned out a fast and exciting encounter.

The Secretary of the Aber-team who accompanied Peake was told continually on going round the field to seek information as to what the Blackburn and other football critics thought of Ernest’s play, had always the same answer, “Yon Peake is a right good lad.”

The manager of the Rovers team, Mr. Middleton, who was accompanied by six or seven directors, also expressed their greatest satisfaction with Ernest’s first appearance and stated openly that he would be given a trial with the first team before the end of the season.

In fact, Mr. Middleton had so much faith in him that he prevailed on Peake to sign a First League form as an amateur before the game commence. The manager had seen him play at the Welsh trial match at Wrexham and in the amateurs’ international at Stockport, so he had a fair idea what class of player E. Peake was.

On arrival at Blackburn, E. Peake was met by the manager of the Rovers’ team and during his stay, Mr. Middelton and the directors treated him and the Town secretary with the greatest kindness and consideration.
(Cambrian News and Merionethshire Standard: March 27, 1908)

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