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Men's 2's end Reading 2's unbeaten run - Henry Taylor scores!

15 February 2020, 11:30, Reading HC

Men's 2s 4 - 3 Reading Men's 2s

Well I can't deny I'm astonished to be penning this report.

On Saturday the boys beat League runaways Reading 2's 4-3 at Sonning Lane.

Let's get the match facts out of the way first before I get on to the weekly trivia. This was by some margin the 2's best performance of the season against a talented, young and fit Reading team. Among those who deserve a mention in despatches were Boggs junior in goal who has improved with each passing week and has now grasped that his role is to get in the way of shots.I think he must previously have been confused by Dunners magnetic counters. He actually played rather well so I've cancelled the pending order for a large dustbin. Nutty was immense in midfield and must have run twice as far as anyone else. Cutter helped himself to a predator's hat trick and put himself about in a way that only he can - good to see. There was no sign of Emile Heskey.

But above all this was the sort of collective team performance that the 2's have always been capable of but rarely delivered, other than in patches, this season. So - well done chaps.

Apart from all of that Henry scored again !!. When I say "again" what I mean is that's 2 goals this season which is twice as many as last season and means now he is scoring  every eight and a half games so we can confidently expect his next goal to come around mid November or, at worst, before the end of the year. That represents a massive improvement on last season when he was held up to rather undeserved but hugely entertaining ridicule - progress indeed. His sweetly struck goal came early in the second half and smashed into the backboard. Crucially it put the boys 2-1 up which ultimately became 4-1 thanks to Cutter. It made me break into a smile apparently.

So this quite unexpected turn of events - namely a decent performance - caused me to wonder what we had done differently this weekend to achieve this more that acceptable outcome. It was the woman who manages the Hawks kitchen that provided the answer at home when she asked why I was behaving like a reasonable member of the human race on a Saturday afternoon - as though that was a rare occurrence. "Dunners" she said "he wasn't there"..

In fact our coach - as I laughingly describe him - was indeed absent on Saturday. He may have been there in spirit and we did have his magnetic board with us but there's no disguising he was not there in person.

For those of you who read this trash but are not fully conversant with our coach's strange ways I should explain that he is fully employed at a local prestigious private school. Hockey coaching for him is a dalliance (I do like that word). He dabbles. I now discover that he is developing a further "sideline" as a part time student tour operator. On Saturday he was in Switzerland with a ski party. He's obviously quite good at this line of business as he managed to commandeer the only Easyjet flight that actually got off the ground that day.

I called him at Zurich airport to tell him of our result and he affected that it was exactly what he had anticipated - as though he'd masterminded it when I know he'd done no such thing.  He is so concerned about the boys that although the ski trip is just for 8 days he's managed to organise it to span not one but two Saturdays. If you ask me he's playing a dangerous game. I know that the blessed Jurgen missed a Liverpool cup game to go on holiday a few weeks ago - but we're talking chalk and cheese here. Just saying.

Anyway that's it.

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