10 Interesting Facts About Kilmarnock…

kilmarnock huddle

1. Kilmarnock were founded in 1869, an event which led directly to the 1st Vatican Council proclaiming the doctrine of Papal Infallibility. Sadly the Pontiff’s efforts at predicting that weekend’s fixed odds coupon only went to show that the doctrine was fundamentally flawed as Kilmarnock lost at home.

2. Kilmarnock were originally founded as a cricket club… which explains a lot.

3. Rugby Park was one of the first grounds to have experimental floodlights installed. On 8th November 1878 a match was played under the illumination of three spotlights. During the game one of the lights failed and two of the players were so badly injured they never played again, which suggests that a young Graeme Souness was guesting for the home team that night and used the cover of darkness to perpetrate his ghastly fouls.

4. During the Second World War the army converted Rugby Park into an oil and coal storage depot due to its close proximity to a railway line. The club kicked up a fuss when the pitch was dug up. Disgruntled supporters kicked up an even bigger fuss when it was relaid after the war and they were forced to watch the team again.

5. After the war a group of Italian POWs helped to dig the foundations for one of the terraces. Supporters were able to use the resultant tunnels to escape from mediocre games during the Seventies.

6. In the late Fifties and early Sixties Kilmarnock used to keep three sheep as mascots. The sheep were kept locked up during games, much to the annoyance of visiting Aberdeen fans who would regularly be driven to paroxysms of frustration.

7. The last of the three sheep to join the great Aberdeen supporters club in the sky died in 1966. Her name was Wilma (the others were called Ruby and Angus) and she was reputedly fond of eating fences (a pre-Taylor Report protest perhaps?) and the doubts from filter tipped cigarettes, many of which were to be found in the opposition goalmouths as keepers invariably had a relaxing afternoon in those days.

8. One of the roofs of the old Rugby Park was sponsored by Johnny Walker whisky and the scoreboard by John Barr whisky. Supporters of Kilmarnock will testify to rumours that during the Seventies and Eighties the first team were suspected of over-indulgence in the sponsors’ product, especially on a Saturday afternoon.

9. In 1990 Kilmarnock were the first team to lose a Scottish Cup tie on a penalty shoot-out when they bottled it at the hands of mighty Stranraer. Both teams had played for 120 minutes without a goal being scored. Following the game the Stranraer fans went on the rampage when they discovered that Wilma had passed away some 25 years previously. The thought of a good time sheep had been the only reason for their journey.

10. That’s enough facts – ed.

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