This is a match report the captain should really be writing but then perhaps he would sell himself short and he did ask for a volunteer.
We should really talk about the hockey in these match reports but it seems that in reading other match reports this is not really the case so I feel with some justification I can broaden the scope as it were. You might think I want to make a political comment, discuss my work / life balance or the inflationary aspects of the current economy. No, but I do really want to discuss Tom Gilman.
Tom is doing an excellent job as captain, is a role model for the youthful generation, and is in all aspects a convivial chap. Jacqui Barlow who happened to be umpiring during 'Gilman's Game' is a respected ex club captain, long time member of the Hawks comittee and just gets things done at Hawks without anyone knowing. She has also taken on the chair role at South Central Hockey. She does her bit as it were. Anyway onto the hockey; in a tight game in which we weren't playing terribly well the score was 2-2 and the mighty Gilman decides to substitute himself on during a short corner before it was finished and as the rules state the corner has to be retaken. A rule is a rule Mr Gilman, and surely lawyers should be aware of this. So of course Thame score the retaken corner and we are down 3-2. Guilt is a funny thing. Gilman striving to get us back into the game driblles through the entire Thame backline and flings himself to the ground winning a corner although not before he passes to the open player in front of an open goal - cue "no advantage ump?" in a polite inquiring manner. The resultant corner produces one of our slicker routines back to the injector Gilman, who buries it into the backboard to go level. Now, many people would be happy to have redeemed themsleves with the goal but the "are you sure that's not offside Jacqui" was quite the retort from the lawman. A wag on the side felt that Jacqui should have replied "well it's not offside but you are off Mr Gilman". Sadly she is too good of an umpire for that. Anyway he is still embarrassed so please mention it to him when you see him.
We actually won the game 4-3 with a winner in the last 5 minutes. I think Thame will feel a little hard done by, but our side of old and young seems to be gelling. James Finlayson also scored a rather sweetly timed backhand which for an over 50's player is quite a thing. I should probably mention the kids - you were all great despite having to play with us oldies. We will try and be better next week.
Many thanks to Evelyn Hargraves for the great photos. Thanks also to Buzz and Jacqui for umpiring. Always appreciated!