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Chums end the season on a high

08 April 2018

Men's 2s 6 - 0 Amersham & Chalfont Men's 1s

Well if you're ever going to play well then you might as well save your best performance till last and end on a high. The chums did just that on a rather miserable afternoon at Amersham on Sunday in completing their league programme. Amersham and Chalfont H.C. (I shall hereafter refer to them as Amersham) had inflicted a rather painful defeat on the chums pre Christmas at BRN, when the Hawks side had not done itself justice. Although I didn't detect any real thirst for revenge in the changing room before Sunday's game I think everyone felt that garnering 3 points from the visit to Buckinghamshire would be nice.

The children were in entertaining form with Ollie and Jake engaged in an unusually intellectual discussion about diets and nutrition which very rapidly demonstrated to all that neither had any idea what they were talking about - slightly surprising as Jake had just spent the previous four days studying the subject on some sort of residential course.

The pre match briefing was just that - brief. Go out and enjoy yourselves was the gist of it. A similar direction had worked quite effectively in the previous game, a 4-0 home drubbing of a rather depleted OMT side.

Any complacency was however soon dispelled because by push back time the chums were down to 10 fit players with Dan Bradley's back failing him in the warm up and no appearance from Lewis who was travelling direct from the ski slopes of France. Amersham by contrast had a cast of thousands and graciously agreed to a 5 minute deferral of the push back just as Lewis hove into the car park.

The first half saw the chums playing some decent hockey between the 25's but struggling to make much of an impact in the home circle - while Amersham occasionally threatened on the break. 0 - 0 at half time. The interval chat focussed on converting territorial advantage into something rather more tangible there being a consensus that registering a goal might be a reasonable objective.

The second half turned out to be a revelation. Harry - who has been busting to have a go at a shortie for several weeks now - was finally given the opportunity and duly obliged with his first effort. To his credit he eschewed the opportunity to sling a few "I told you so's" in the direction of the management team.

Jake (yes this is not a misprint) having been kicked into the air by the Amersham keeper then demanded to take the resulting stroke and put it away with some aplomb - before anyone had time to contact BetFred and place a sizeable wager against such an outcome. Knoxy then beat 3 men in the circle and slammed home his only goal of the season - clearly we were watching something extraordinary unfold before our very eyes. Finally Jake(2) and Lewis added 3 more - final score 6-0 to the chums.

Some of the hockey played in this 35 minute period was exceptional and would have had the bearded Tasmanian purring in delight had he been there and not the other side of the world.

If only the 2's had played like this all season. Particularly pleasing was the contribution of the kindergarten in all of this. Laurie was solid and dependable at left back and always seemed to make the right decision. Harry and Ollie have improved hugely in recent weeks and kept the ball moving smoothly and accurately through the midfield. Ollie in particular was outstanding throughout. And Jake was Jake except that he is now learning when to give and when to go and as a result of his three goals he finishes as top scorer for the 2's just pipping Dan Bradley who was watching from his bath chair on the rather attractive balcony that overlooks the Amersham pitch.

So that's 10 goals for and none against in the chums final 2 games and a mid table finish of 30 points,  I'll settle for that in a season of injuries, unavailability and defections.

Next season promises better things especially with the progress the youngsters have made. We'll see

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