MIKE’S MUSINGS – 8 September 2009


BBQ and Bleach

Preparations for the new season continue this Saturday with an almost full programme of friendly matches although it is disappointing to note that the Men’s Vets game has been cancelled.

Both the Ladies’ and Men’s 1sts had good results on their travels last weekend with the Ladies drawing 1-1 away to Barnes and the Men beating Doncaster 3-0 after losing the previous day against Harborne. This Saturday the Ladies are in action at the PLUM Tournament (Old Loughtonians HC) while the Men entertain City of Peterborough (2.15).

The Ladies’ Club matches were over and the BBQ in full swing (with thanks to Graham Clark and Philippa Taylor) when I got to Weybread last Saturday to hear the good news that the walls and floor in the men’s showers had been given a good dose of bleach and elbow grease. Our thanks go to the Men’s 3rds for this development. I hope they are equally as useful at home!

This week sees a very welcome return to the club of England international (and EuroNations Gold Medallist) Richard (Ratty) Alexander. Richard, who began his distinguished hockey career at Magpies, will be taking three coaching sessions – Ladies’ 1sts (Tuesday), Junior Boys and Girls (Wednesday) and Men’s 1sts (Thursday).

Congratulations and best wishes to –

· Tristan Baynes and Rachel Suckling and to Peter Bale and Ellie Catchpole on their recent marriages.

· Sheila George on her appointment as President of the East Region Hockey Association in succession to Bill Felton. I take this opportunity to thank Bill for his hard work on behalf of East Hockey and for the support and encouragement he gave HMHC during his term of office.

· Norman Hart (HMHC VP) on his appointment as President of the East Region Hockey Umpiring Association.

Best wishes also to club members who are leaving us to go away to university, namely Chris Barber, Helen Brook, Rachel Clifford, Will Johnson, Becky Marshall, Fred Merrett, Jose Molloy, Amy Tuffs and Jimmy Wheeler. They will always be very welcome back at the club whenever they wish. Please let me know of any omissions from this list.

Other news/comments

· If rugby union allowed rolling substitutions as per hockey the recent and damaging ‘Bloodgate’ affair would have been avoided.

· At least three members of the England squad have joined Reading Ladies since the promotion of the team to the Premier Division of the EHL.

· Handbooks will be issued on payment of subscriptions – what an offer!

Date for your diary please – Curry-Oke Night in the clubhouse at 7.30pm on Saturday 24 October; further details to be announced.

With kind regards and best wishes

Mike Denham 01603 506925 MDenham975@aol.com 8/9/09