LX CLUB at European Trophy Tournament, Bra, Italy

6th to 10th June 2012


With a month to go LX white had 16 players, and as LX Red had 13 we agreed to give them a player. By the time we left we were down to 12 as two had injured themselves in non-hockey activity and one had a family crisis … and one player was not going to arrive until after the first game! Adrian Stephenson kindly agreed to switch from LX Red. The actual side was Colin Kimber, Sudesh Nayar, Roger Lomas (capt), Mike Gale, Graham George, Richard Danson, Richard Clarke, Bob Grenside, Max Hamber, Rod Cochrane, Graham Martin, Adrian Stephenson and Tony Jones.

We took the pitch against the full German O65 national team and played reasonably well, holding out until just before half time. They scored another two goals in the second half and we also lost Richard Clarke with a damaged hamstring, so we were down to a basic 11 at the end.

We dominated the next game against Alliance but managed to concede a soft goal against the run of play. We then launched a series of attacks but with no success until a patched up  Richard Clarke was in the right place to put us level. Sadly we could not get another and the game finished 1-1. In game three we at last turned our possession into goals and beat Scotland 3-0. Graham Martin converted a penalty stroke in the first half and this was followed by a goal from Adrian Stephenson and another from Graham Martin in open play. A new right defender emerged from the patched up squad in Rod Cochrane and Max Hamber found a new role at left half. 

Our last pool game was against the Dutch O65 a team and some great defending, particularly Colin in goal supported by Roger Lomas and the rest of the defence , we held them to 2-0 which put us into the top pool for the first five places.

We not unexpectedly lost to our LX Red team , reported on in greater depth elsewhere in the reports. We then played Wales in the last game with the winner taking the 4th spot. We dominated the first half with our midfield of Mike Gale and Bob Grenside prompting runs from Adrian Stephenson  and Tony Jones. We had a number of short corners but couldn't convert them. Wales came more into it in the second half and the defence with Sudesh and Richard Danson prominent held firm until a late goal from a broken down short corner gave Wales a 1-0 win. Disappointing way to finish but we finished above other full national teams and Alliance.

Thanks to Lesley Martin for organising the social side , Mike Gale for the warm-ups and Bob Grenside for being captain of vice, even if the balls never saw the light of day! We had some good nights out together, particularly the meal and disco at the ground after a late game. It was a battle of the national anthems with the young locals, and dancing exhibitions from the well-oiled Tony Jones and Mike Gale left some of the locals traumatised. The tournament Gala dinner was well done by our Italian hosts and enjoyed by our attendees. The most memorable event was the last night out at the local pizzeria where Tony Jones did his amazing collapsing chair act to entertain the local diners, and this time he was sober.