LX Club

at Barcelona on 20-23 June 2013

The Mentors Grand Masters Tournament for 2013 was  held in Barcelona, at the ground of the Real Club de Polo not far from the Nou Camp, the home of Barcelona F.C.  The Club has 3 water base artificial pitches and is one of the most prestigious sports clubs in Spain.

LX Over 60s        Click for > Report on LX Over 65s below

Day 1

Belgium--drew 1-1, but all independent observers said we deserved to win. Probably their full national team.

Holland--Lost 2-0, This was their current national squad, and they are, of course, the current world champions. Observers said we clearly outplayed them in the 2nd half, but despite 2 good chances, we fell short in our comeback. Great performance.

Despite a draw and a loss, we felt that if we could win our 2 games on the second day, we would still go thro' to the semis.

Day 2

  Italy--won 3-0. Easy victory.

If we had beaten Alliance, then Alliance--lost 1-0, but completely outplayed them, and conceded from a late short corner.  We went for an attacking formation in this game. Maybe we should have stuck with our 4-3-3. A draw might have been enough.

we would have been in the semis, so that was the vital game, and it didn't go for us.

Then in the playoffs, we outplayed Wales, and lost 1-0 to a fluky goal. Long hit into the D, no Wales player near the ball, and went in off our goallies pads.

Then should have played Belgium again, but all those teams involved agreed to mix it up, so we outplayed Holland B instead, but could only draw 1-1.

So we finished close to the bottom of all participants, but the results don't tell the full story, and we felt 3rd or 4th would have been a true reflection of just how well we played.

  Final placings---1.Spain, 2. Holland , 3. Germany , 4. Alliance

Socials were great. 9 partners were with us. So,23 in total. Meals in local restaurant and in Barcelona centre, before a really good Saturday night barbecue at the Polo Club, and a fantastic Sunday night in a local tapas bar, followed by crashing in on a street party near the hotel celebrating the Festival of St John, with good group and plenty of dancing, and firecrackers/rockets making it sound like a scene from Syria/Libya/Beirut. Fantastic atmosphere.

Barcelona sightseeing enjoyed by all.

The hotel was just 5 minutes from the ground. Excellent arrangements.

Many thanks to Bob Purshouse, for his usual comprehensive and faultless arrangements.

Squad:-   Fripp, Patton, Branston, Guppy, Hodge, Singh ( Paj), Girling, Robertson, Oakley, Denison, Sheridan, Arain, Bolina, and Kjellin.

Report: Trevor Denison ( Capt)

LX Over 65s

LX England 65 was in the O65 tournament with two Dutch teams (Zeistplussers) , Germany , Wales , Italy and Alliance. and the format was a round robin with two games on the Thursday and Friday and one on the Saturday and Sunday.

The side had an average age of over 70 with eight over 70s (seven current England players) and seven  over 65s (no current England players and predominantly LX whites for Kontich).

We were probably giving an average of 5 years to most of the oppositions , some of who were using the tournament as practice for their O65s going to Kontich.

We came a creditable third to win  a rather nice trophy and bronze medals.

Team;  Peter Curtis , Richard Danson, Peter Danson ,   Mike Gale , Tony Henman , John Land, Roger Lomas , John Longden, Patrick Maher , Sudesh Nayar, Colin Pearce , David B Read, Nigel Steed , Adrian Stephenson, Ken Wilcock 

We beat Zeistplussers tournament trophy team , Italy and Alliance , drew with Wales and lost to strong German and Zeistplussers teams

All the team gave their all from Paddy Meher in goal through to Adrian Stephenson leading the attack . The side with eight ladies supporting the team mixed well socially had a very good time outside the hockey with meals at a local restaurant ,  a BBQ at the club on Saturday and trips into the city.  

Our first game on Thursday morning was against Italy and a good strike from Adrian Stephenson following good work down the right from Peter  Danson and Tony Henman and various defenders keeping their star striker quiet gave us a deserved 1-0 win.

We then played Wales in the afternoon and probably had the best chances to win the game but it finished goalless with Peter Curtis causing some problems for them on our left wing and David Read prompting down our right.

The following day we played Zeistplussers B , probably their tournament trophy team for Kontich , and in a really good team performance we ran out 1-0 winners .

Adrian again scored the goal but we worked hard in mid field and anything the defence could not cope with Paddy  Mayer made some really good saves.

We played a strong and younger Germany side later in the day and with our tired legs from the first game they ran out comfortbale winners 3-0 despite our best efforts.

On Saturday we had a reshuffle as Tony Henman had been whacked on his calf in the Germany game and he was not able to play any further part.

We scored two goals in quick succession just before half time against Alliance , Roger Lomas promoted to right wing was in the right place to tuck in a cross from the left and John Land followed up some good work by Adrian to score the second. We continued to dominate in the  second half with  Peter Danson , Ken Wilcock , Mike Gayle  ,Sudesh Nayar and Colin Pearce creating space but our only reward was on an own goal from Ken thrashing the ball into their D , much to the surprise of the Alliance full back who it deflected off who had not heard about the change in rules !!.

That was enough to give us third place and if we could win against the full strength Zeistplussers A we could come second/. We adopted a more defensive formation and with some heroics from Richard Danson , John Longden and Nigel Steed and some great saves from Paddy we held out to half time. The did go in front early in the second half but we did create a couple of chances and it wasn't until the last five finutes they consolidated with a second when their speed and fitness gave them an overload.

Stories of the underpants on back to front , gin drinking and amazing tricks with a bottle of gin will be saved for another potentially more embarrassing time.

 Bob Purshouse had done his usual brilliant job with the hotel (just a 5 minute walk to the ground.) and other arrangements . 

Ian Marsh announced his retirement from umpiring after his last game in Barcelona and the LX teams marked the occasion with a small gift and a few words of thanks at the closing ceremony.

Report: Roger Lomas