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M2s make hay as the Coach goes Christmas Shopping

11 December 2021, 13:30, Cantley Fields

Men's 2s 3 - 0 South Berkshire Mens 1s

West Berkshire away looked like a tricky fixture on paper for the men's 2's coming as it did after an uninspiring win at home against Eastcote the previous Saturday.

And before I deal with the events of this weekend let me just pay tribute to those worthies, whoever they may be, responsible for the amalgamation of Wokingham and Brackell Hockey Clubs  for resisting the temptation to christen the new club Wokingham and Bracknell Hockey Club or, even, Bracknell and Wokingham Hockey Club and thereby, in a stroke, overcoming any proprietorial arguments over which of the two original legacy clubs should take precedence in the name of the new club

South Berkshire has a nice pithy ring to it as well as laying claim to half of Berkshire - but I suppose may have irritated some other long established clubs also located in that part of the Royal County.

Whatever - SBHC (as I shall refer to them ) sat to the middlle of the league table, had recently put 8 goals past Amersham and Chalfont Mens 1st XI ( see what I mean) - no mean feat - and more impressively shared the spoils 1-1 with Marlow (for which performance go the dribbling thanks of Oxford Hawks).

We were without our top scorer and drag flicking maestro Dan Andrews away in Scotland, midfield colossus Tim Blackburn, and on his sick bed the improving Matteo. For good measure we also had Jowett ( I can't find an epithet which remotely covers his overall contribution to the side on or off the pitch) - sweating on the result of a PCR test.

Against this scenario I' m disturbed and embarrassd to tell you that our esteemed (by some) coach had chosen to take the day off to go shopping at a Christmas market rather than discharge his responsibilies in Wokingham. I should also reaffirm that this is not to be seen as an isolated decision as he had also taken leave of absence two weeks earlier when I had been left to fill in for him in a convincing win over Havant. 

Indeed, examples of his bizarre recent behaviour are legion.

Firstly there was the well chronicled (by me) incident of him "losing" his car keys at Marlow.

Secondly he is now saying he was selected to play hockey in Spain for some representative team when he should have been at BRN for the outstanding win against Havant for which I was left in sole control. (see above). Seriously, does anyone believe that?

And this week he suddenly produced our missing white number 13 shirt. He explained that he had found it at the side of the pitch at BRN. However It's probably not irrelevant to point out that in the last 2 or 3 weeks he has gutted his house to renovate it and has pretty much been living in his car. Suddenly - lo and behold, he turns up with a M's 2's white number 13 shirt out of the blue that has been missing for weeks. You, the jury must decide.

Anyway, as luck would have it, we turned up at Cantley Park and, almost from first minute to last, played our best hockey of the season. Their Keeper played extremely well but 3-0 scarcely did the boys justice.

I have an undeserved reputation for being overcritical so let me live up to it by saying that our  finishing was pretty wasteful because it was. The goals we did get came from Cutter (watched by his Dad who had come down form the family pile in Skipton but not his Mum who had also come down from Skipton but decided to go shopping in Oxford - where she may possibly have come across our absent coach) , James Price (filling in for the absent Andrews),and new boy Adam Grout who seemed thoroughly to enjoy himself and shelled a Dutchman past the heroic home keeper for the third goal.

Just to be clear I am not claiming any credit for the performance and wouldn't dream of doing so. The fact that we stopped forcing our moves, kept possession for long periods, played with enormous patience, never went behind (for the first time in 6 matches), kept a clean sheet and played with style and aggression for the first time this season was, clearly just a pure coincidence.

I did , however, at least have the pleasure of telling the coach.

Only kidding Dunners !!

 

Happy Christmas All.

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