Alfie Boyd part 2
following on 10-00 hours, 5th Bulletin—ALF IS FIT FOR PLAY (THANK HEAVENS).17-37 hours, MATCH WON—THANKS TO SICK QUARTERS. (They do come in useful sometimes after all.)
This gained Waterkloof their place to the Air Force Cup proper and they went on to hammer Bloemfontein 7-3, then after a 2-2 draw with Queenstown they finally secured their place in the final with a 2-1 victory in the replay, so went onto face Youngsfield in the Final. They finally beat Youngsfield 2-1 after extra time to lift the cup.
Waterkloof went on to retain the cup in 1943, so it’s safe to say Alfie was used to cup success and how this would further prove itself later on in his career.The Scottish League ‘B’
After the war Alfie went back to playing for St Johnstone, they seemed to be always struggling to keep their prize asset. Initially it was the RAF that were their biggest concern, Alfie was still enlisted and there were rumours that he may be posted, from Leuchars to Norfolk down South in November, this was initially cancelled on compassionate grounds, but the threat was always there until he was due to be demobbed the following March.
St. Johnstone started the new season after WWII in the B League. Alfie was one of their most experienced players, most teams had to start with trialists and Juniors so close after the War. He was regularly highlighted as their most outstanding player and was even selected as a reserve for Scotland against Ireland, not bad for a player from the ‘B’ Division.
Dundee were running away with the League and St. Johnstone had the proud distinction of being one of only 3 teams to defeat Dundee. They won 4-1 at Muirton against Dundee who were already Champions. Dundee were missing Bobby Ancell and Tommy Gallagher, but still had Bert Juliussen, Tommy Gray, George (Pud) Hill and Sammy Cox playing, with Cox being described as "almost International class", despite this, the man of the match, or in those days the ‘Bouquet’ went to Alfie Boyd. As reported in the Perthshire Advertiser "The Bouquet again goes to Boyd, whose skill made him one of the chief instruments of his native Dundee’s defeat."
Saint’s finished a credible mid table position in 1945-46 Season, but the battle to hang onto Alfie was about to start again, this time ambitious Airdrie were in the hunt for his services in their plans to win the league, as were English giants Newcastle United. Eventually Boyd put pen to paper for St. Johnstone for another season and was named team Captain.
Boyd happy at Muirton Prepared to buy overcoat, but sell boots? Boyd signs and stays as Captain
A blow to St Johnstone was Boyd’s groin injury which kept him out of action for weeks. To add to St. Johnstone’s woes rumours started to reach the press that Alfie wanted to return to South Africa, where his wife Doris and daughter Heather were still waiting, this would mean no fee for Boyd?
What husband would not be anxious to be with his family?
He had hoped to fly back to Rhodesia in a RAF ‘Gloucester Meteor’, he even took the ejector seat training, then travel back by jeep, but this idea fell through, but now an air passage had become available to take him home to his loved ones at the end of the month.
Saints dropped Boyd before a Cup game against Hearts after he put in a transfer request. Many takes were given to this story Alfie’s own story is reputed to be as follows.
"The player had a meeting with the St. Johnstone directors on Tuesday night and told them this, "England out", but explained that if he was transferred to a Scottish club and provided he was allowed to keep his job in Dundee, he might stay, this would allow St. Johnstone a fee. He won’t go to England however. The Muirton directors told the player that they would grant his transfer request, but that they wouldn’t play him in this weeks cup tie. "They thought" said Alfie "That if I was cup-tied it would reduce the possibilities of a Scottish club buying my transfer. I was quite willing to play and take the chance." When English clubs were inquiring about Boyd sometime ago, St. Johnstone had placed him in the £6,000 class.
Another take on the story was "How many clubs would have the courage to drop their skipper and star player on the eve of the season’s biggest game?"
"How many clubs would prefer to lessen their cup tie chances for the sake of a principle? Very few you say. I agree, but numbered among the few are St. Johnstone" was another quote from the press of the time. The reported Muirton angle on the story, which has proven a long drawn out wrangle. "It was started at the back end of the year with the news that Boyd was keen to return to South Africa, where he served with the RAF. That would have deprived St. Johnstone of a good cheque. Then came a reprieve, Boyd postponed his departure until the end of April. Now for the latest development. Boyd has the offer of an air passage to the Dominion. He’s prepared to forego that if the club will transfer him to a Scottish side, that would enable him to carry on with his job in Dundee."
"Looks like Boyd’s finished with Muirton. He wants to better himself, as he has every right to. Now he’s listed for transfer." The reporter of this article went on to state, "With the rights and wrongs of this case, I take no sides. But at least I admire that St. Johnstone spirit. They know they will miss Boyd, but a dissatisfied player they feel can’t give of his best, they might build for the day when Boyd has gone."
Source: Dundee Mad
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