MIKE’S MUSINGS – 24 November 2009

HECTIC WEYBREAD

Last weekend was a hectic one at Weybread with seven games on Saturday and the U11 and U13 Girls Minis on Sunday followed by the top of the table clash between the Ladies’1sts and Ipswich.

Saturday began with the Ladies’ 6ths having a tough day against Dereham 4ths but spirits were raised with the Ladies Development going back to the top of their league with an excellent 8-0 win over Pelicans. The Men’s Veterans then gave one of their best Saturday performances in ages to beat undefeated Pelicans 6-2 to record their fourth successive win after a sluggish start to the season. Whatever skipper Simon Bardwell has said to his team is working. Or have they now stopped listening to him?! Next up were the Men’s 3rds and in an incident packed game – which included a red card for one of the visitors – they were soon three goals up against close challengers Pelicans 2nds before finishing 6-0 winners.

Meantime the Men’s 2nds, for whom Iain Cumming had a good game following his promotion from the 3rds, dominated their match against lowly Norwich City but confronted by a resolute defence had only two Hamish Barton penalty corner strikes to show for their efforts in a 2-1 win. After this Saturday’s match against City of Peterborough 2nds Hamish will be away ski instructing for five months. He will be a big loss but the good news is that he will be back next season. Will the returning Andy Bedwell and Tom French be able to fill Hamish’s shoes after Christmas following the end of their efforts to spread goodwill on their world tour? I have no doubt that they will do their best! The day ended with a splendid and much needed win for the Men’s 5ths who beat Holt Harlequins 3-2. The match included the goal of the day when following a speedy and flowing move up the pitch Tom Miller was on hand to sweep the ball passed the visitors’ goalkeeper. Another highlight of the game was seeing Pete Thornett’s failure to brake before slamming into the fencing with his stick flying through the air. Pete – the fencing has been there since 2002!

The good news coming in from our teams playing away included a 1-1 draw for the Men’s 1sts at Oxted, the Ladies’ 2nds beating Bourne 2-0 and the Men’s 4ths beating Sudbury 2nds 4-2.

On Sunday morning the car park was packed and the ground and clubhouse a hive of activity for the U11 Girls Minis won by Norwich City and the U13 Girls Minis won by Magpies. This was a second and well deserved success of the season for the home team. Attention then turned to the Ladies’ 1sts who in front of their biggest crowd of the season went down by the narrowest of margins to Ipswich with only a well struck first half penalty strike dividing the teams. I hope by now everyone involved has dried out following the monsoon-like rain! This swept across the pitch early in the second half resulting in the game being suspended for several minutes.

This weekend the two 1sts teams play Southgate in their first return and last outdoor matches until 6 February before turning their attentions to the indoor game. On Saturday the Ladies travel to Southgate (2.00) looking to get back to winning ways at the end of an excellent first part of the season while the Men are at home on Sunday (2.15), with hopefully Richard Gill back in action after missing two games through injury, seeking a win over third placed Southgate to make their league position more secure at the mid-season break. Earlier in the season the Ladies beat Southgate 3-1 and the Men went down by the only goal of the game.

The home matches on Saturday include the Ladies’ 2nds playing IES (2.15) and the Men’s 4ths entertaining table topping Norwich Dragons (12.30). Please see the Home Page of the website for the full list of weekend fixtures including those involving our youth teams on Sunday. Best of luck to all our teams in action this weekend.

News and comments in brief

· Belated congratulations to David Francis and Debbie McAllen on their engagement. How come I only got to hear of this very happy news last weekend?

· Congratulations also to Barry Middleton who has been named Great Britain Hockey Athlete of the Year. Barry played outstandingly well in captaining England to their triumph in the 2009 EuroNations Championship in Amsterdam when the team beat Germany 5-3 in the memorable final.

· Many thanks to Jules and Harriet Flatt for decorating the clubhouse last weekend for Christmas and to everyone who helped in any way in running the very successful minis.

· Please come to the live Ferret Racing and Bangers & Mash Night to be held in the clubhouse on Saturday 5 December (7.30pm). Tickets (only £5) are available from the bar.

· The recent Curry-Oke Night made an excellent profit of £440. ‘Thank you’ to everyone who attended.

With kind regards and best wishes Mike Denham 01603 506925 MDenham975@aol.com 24/11/09