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My, oh my, where to start? I must first applaud those on the pitch who tried valiantly to play some rugby. Our plucky little group were up against it, big time, in taking on a team who in their coach’s words, ‘weren’t half bad’.
Finding Olivia unexpectedly available gave us some hope of respectability. That terrific young athlete ran her heart out, took some big hits and scored our try, before then giving her all for the hockey team, whose match, hallelujah, started later.
You may have noticed the word ‘try’ being singular. It was engineered by the referee who, to his great credit, did his best to even up the fixture with some curious, nay astounding, biased decisions in our favour. Those poor Cundall boys must never have knocked on, found themselves offside or fouled their opponents so astonishingly frequently in a single game, ever! That they ‘did’ yet resolutely witheld objections or declarations of sheer outrage was indeed commendable.
Fending off and dragging back Cundall grapplers and tacklers, the ‘referee’ ensured as trouble free a passage as was possible, without appearing like Popeye hurling hapless antagonists skyward, for Olivia to scramble home a last minute try.
Sam, as usual, also put in as close to 100% as you can get, and Ted managed some more than useful runs. Oliver eventually realised that he too could make some forward movement if he put his leg muscles into gear, while sometimes even carrying the ball. A little more grit and self belief throughout the team wouldn’t go amiss. There is certainly plenty to work on in training and Mr S has my wholehearted sympathy... er, I mean support.
Thanks to those who never gave up despite facing impossible odds, to the sporting attitude of our opponents, to those who watched in wonder, and finally to the man in the middle who tried heroically to give encouragement and continuity to a form of rugby he must rarely witness.