LX Over 60s v Welsh Dragons (Wales Over 60s)
at Cardiff on 3rd February 2013
Result: LX Red 1 Welsh Dragons 3
Based on past experience and, as predicted, the challenge on arrival was to find a parking space and then the changing room. A number of those who had played in 2012 decided to travel changed and so avoid the ‘hunt the changing room’ game until after the match. Eventually, all members of the squad had assembled, caught up with news and then subjected themselves to a ‘Slator’ warm up to get the car journeys out of their systems.
On paper the selected LX Reds formed a reasonably strong squad. However, it soon became apparent that the Welsh had other ideas and LX found themselves under a considerable amount of sustained pressure. As a result it was not long before LX found themselves a goal down. Although LX did manage to relieve the pressure from time to time and take the game into the Welsh half, they were unable to put the ball into the net.
During the 1st half that LX lost their sweeper, Alan Muller, to a hard struck rising ball that caught him on the hand. This meant a small reorganisation which seemed to unsettle LX even more with the result that another goal was scored by the Welsh.
The 2nd half saw a more determined effort by the LX which saw them come back into the game and make it a much more even affair. Despite this, LX managed to concede a 3rd goal but this did not lead to a collapse. In fact the opposite and from one of the many attacking moves which LX then made a penalty corner was awarded to LX. This led to a penalty stroke courtesy of a Welsh foot. Having forgotten to nominate a stroke taker at the start of the match, the captain took responsibility and stepped forward. Fortunately there was sufficient power behind the flick to enable the ball to ricochet off the keeper’s shoulder and into the net, 3-1.
The 2nd half also saw the return of Alan to the field of play but this was not enough to enable LX to increase their score. The match therefore ended with a delighted Welsh squad winning 3-1. The teams then retired to the local pub, Y Mochyn Du, for refreshment, both liquid and food, which, in the case of the o60s was mainly plates of very large pieces of fish and chips.
It was very evident that the Welsh have put a lot of effort into their GM organisation holding early trials and having a number of practice games to allow the squad to settle down and play together. This was very evident from their match play – they started by looking like a team who had played together before while LX took some time, too much time, to settle down and get used to each others’ style of play.
Many thanks to all who attended, some of whom travelled quite a distance. Thanks also to those supporters who also came along to provide some vocal support; not the most pleasant of days weather wise, certainly not the hot sunshine we had in 2012.
Squad: Bill Goodridge (GK), Allan Muller, Nigel Guppy, Brian Stokes, Geoff Furneaux ,John Tripp, Neil Stone, Richard Slator (Capt), Phil Hubert, Parmjit Bolina, Zahid Arain, Trevor Dennison