Memories of Herbie Smith - one of the Herts Ad Sunday League's early greats

The cover of the Herts Ad Sunday League's anniversary book.

The cover of the Herts Ad Sunday League's anniversary book. - Credit: HERTS AD SUNDAY LEAGUE

A chance phone call to league guru Bubs Hubball stirred memories of the Herts Ad Sunday League's early days - as their 60th year celebrations prepare to welcome the return of competitive action.

The league restarts with seven games on Good Friday before a full fixture list on Saturday.

But it is a fair bit some of those playing now will remember one of the leading lights from days gone by.

Herbie Smith

Herbie Smith was a star striker in the Herts Ad Sunday League as well as making two appearances for St Albans City. - Credit: BRIAN HUBBALL

Now 81, Herbie Smith moved to Exeter 12 years ago but during his time in Hertfordshire he developed a reputation as a fearsome winger.

He played for Gainsborough ‘A’ in 1963-64 where they became knockout cup runners-up and in 1973 he was a member of the Queens Head squad caused the biggest cup upset in the league's history. They were Division Two champions when they defeated the mighty Sporting Club 1-0 in the Knockout Cup final, Brian Clarke scoring the late goal.

Smith also won honours playing for the League side in the inter-league cup.

He then moved on to the all-star Sporting Club where he scored 40 goals and won many trophies.

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Smith was one of seven brothers but the only one to take up football and was a great favourite at Clarence Park where he played for St Albans City on the wing.