(match report by Lynn Bryden)
Magnums won 6-2
Sadly wen (The Flutes) lost 6-2 but the score doesn’t really reflect the balance of the game – it was a bit more even than that but clearly they benefited from playing regularly together and it was our first match for 18 long months!
We welcomed several new players to the team – Susie Wakefield, Sarah Richardson and Bhu McJennett, and also Olive Kagere and Enrica Tagliasacchi who are not of the same vintage as the rest of us but whose presence was greatly appreciated.
It was also a family affair with Richard and Kim Bishop-Laggett doing battle on opposite sides, and Brian Cade – the partner of Flutes stalwart Jo Berndes – keeping us in check with the whistle. Thanks to him and Jonny Ray for so generously giving up their time.
It was lovely to be playing together again and with those we don’t see as often – Pauline Page, Elaine Creeley and Caroline Hunt – after such a long break and it took a while for us to get used to it!
In the first half we had some big gaps between the defence and the midfield and likewise the midfield and forwards at times. Was that because we lacked pace, or were we just chatting with our markers? Or perhaps posing for some photos as Jo Price kindly made use of her time subbed off the pitch to snap some action shots. This was a social game after all 😉 The upshot was some long hard passes that were too easy for the oppo to intercept and too hard for our own players to connect with. Let’s just say the Magnums were clearly well acquainted with their limitations as they minimised running and played some lovely passing hockey to get past a very determined Helen Argyrou back in goal from a long spell of injury and strike the backboard three times in the first half.
Late in that first period indomitable centre-mid Annette Woodrow scored a lovely goal after some fine team play as she curved the ball in from the left post into the right-hand side of the net.
There was a glimmer of hope as the half-time refreshments beckoned and we went into the break with Magnums holding a slender 3-1 lead.
Flutes definitely played better in the second half and moved up and down the pitch more as a unit. The halftime team talk from our captain Lynn Bryden and Jo Berndes worked. Our passing improved too.
Everyone worked hard and we all seemed to enjoy ourselves. The final play of the match was a short corner to us and from an airborne cross from Sarah, Kathy Hammond playing way out of her usual position as the 13th player on the pitch, deflected it high past the keeper leaving scurrying Magnum defenders checking their scant hairlines for damage. Amazing!
While we provided a selection of cakes, both teams also enjoyed a drink from the bar courtesy of the Magnums particularly hat-trick hero Andrew “Pom” Pomiankowski.
Thank you again to them all, It was good to catch up with everyone especially those we don’t see so often and feel like life might at some point return to ‘normal’.