Injuries, school rugby call ups and a late withdrawal from the 1's squad resulted in the 2's staggering to Saturday morning with rather fewer fit and available players than was ideal. Thus the visit to Witney, following two successive League defeats which had seen Hawks plummet to 5th place in the League table, looked more challenging than senior management (that's me and Dunners) might have wanted. That is not to say that going to Witney is ever to be regarded as a slice of TLWMTHK's banana cake - far from it. Witney these days, especially on home ground, are a serious proposition and as of Friday night sat but one league place behind the 2's and only 3 points short of parity.
So we approached the visit to Wood Green School with probably the same mindset the Welsh rugby squad had viewed their third place play off with the mortally wounded All Blacks - angry and snarling as they were - less than a month ago. In short we would be happy to come back to BRN with 3 points - no matter how obtained.
Speaking of the Welsh I confess they are a people I've never found it very easy to love - and here I should probably offer my apologies to anyone from Wales who is a devotee of these reports. Yes I delude myself. But if there is anyone from the Rhondda who happens to be reading this garbage they would probably be well advised to look away now.
To continue. My problem with the Welsh is manifold although it relates to them more as a collection than as individuals. In fact there are some Welsh people who I can rub along with quite tolerably - and I never thought I'd ever say that.
In my younger days I had to suffer with them (JPR, Barry John, Gareth Edwards and Phil Bennett etc. etc. ad nauseam) stuffing England year on year but then ramming it down our throats for the rest of the year. At least now it's no exaggeration to say their best player is actually a referee. And then there 's the insufferable one eyed commentator Jonathan Davies - of whom no further comment required..
Next there was a comedian (his description not mine) called Max Boyce who thought it was hysterical to speak in an extreme Welsh accent and dress up as a daffodil. Then there's Tom Jones.
Finally for the purposes of this report (the list is actually by no means exhaustive and I could go on) there is the fact that you even used to have to pay to get into "God's Country" as the Welsh sometimes refer to the principality. Now I'm prepared to concede that some things Welsh are very pleasant indeed (Pembrokeshire, Snowdonia, Katherine Jenkins) but there's plenty that isn't (Leeks, Neath, Neil Kinnock, Caerphilly cheese (yuk) etc). And if you've ever had the misfortune to go to Port Talbot you'll be left in no doubt that Port Talbot and God's Country are mutually exclusive. For those of you who are not as academically gifted as our captain Henry Taylor that means that if you have Port Talbot in your country it is an impertinence to contemplate describing it as God's Country and you should stop doing so if you want to be taken seriously.
But for all of that - and this is the point I wanted to get to - the Welsh do take some credit for inventing a word for "good" which is not "good" but another rather better word which has to be spoken in a slight Welsh accent for maximum impact. That word is "tidy". It is incomparably better than the word the English sometimes (albeit very rarely for anyone over 30 years of age) use instead of "good" which I don't really understand. That word is "sick". Where does that come from I wonder. It is utterly perplexing. If somebody calls me "sick" or says something is "sick" I don't think they are being complimentary I just think that I may be very seriously ill because although I am feeling well somebody else has told me I'm sick so I must, at the very least, be looking gravely ill. Or - worse still - they think I'm depraved in which case I'd want to punch their lights out.
By contrast I think "tidy" is a great alternative to "good" and it can be modified by using the expression "well tidy" which roughly means very good or - (Brookes students grab the Thesaurus if the University has one) - counter intuitively "half tidy" which means brilliant/excellent. So I'm going to illustrate further how these expressions work in common parlance as follows.
Hawks 2's put in a tidy performance against Witney in a reasonably comfortable 5-2 win. Goals were scored by Bas Marshall 2, Ed Wilkinson, Freddie Smith and Charlie Winder. One goal in particular created in a five man move and finished by Bas Marshall was well tidy.
With apologies to all my friends in God's country.
A half tidy day