Our final fixture...
..and didn't we look good...
Our final battle in what has been a war of a season encompassing the lows, highs, pushes and shoves. Westwood, the bread to our sandwiched season, were our foe this time.
This was not a game for the light hearted. Through the first half there was disappointment (both with the referee, our performance and the fact we had to change shirts 15 minutes into the game) frustration with the ref (Weg spending 10 minutes resting for a reasonable tackle) and a perception that we might not have got off the bus and arrived at the races until Westwood had put 11 unanswered points past our valiant warriors.
Come half time, Kyle, our trusty leader throughout this most difficult and despairing season, altered the team with Adder having to retire through injury to be replaced by a slightly less injured Hedd, Mr. Webster, having run himself into the ground was swapped with The Bearded Marauder, Nate, and Rich Cliffe coming on to replace the sore Weg.
Within moments of the restart The Mighty Ath signalled their intent with Fish almost going over before being taken into touch. From the resulting line out, The Bearded Marauder stole the ball, it was magnificent.
Soon enough we had got our first try of the game through Dan Hapgood, using his size and power to go over the line. This was quickly followed by a Penalty Try, the Westwood pack unable to cope with the sheer ferocity of the invigorated Athletic forwards.
Dan went over again, in typical Hapgood fashion; with an opponent or two hanging off of him... The next try was scored by Sam Janes. I'm not sure how as I had just been twatted in the cock by the Westwood 12 and was lying on the floor gently weeping. Sam, fill us in...
Corley, Dad, The Ginger Ninja, scored our fifth try. This was through sheer bloody mindedness and jinking- yes, jinking- a la JPR through the Westwood defence. Happy Birthday, you stubborn bastard!
We spent the whole of the second half in the Westwood half, highlights being War Machine and Kind Daz's lovely interchange, Sam Janes' 'King Carlos' through the legs pass, the Bearded Marauders short run which left a Westwood player having to leave the pitch and Crabman's sideways sprinting and spinning.
Lastly, with the final move of the game, and the season, our beloved Bearded Marauder ripped the ball from Le Poisson and carried the ball and, so I've heard, at least four opposition players over the line and onto the score sheet.
In a game which summed up our season, an apt and magical turn around which we all know we're capable of, we embattled warriors left the field victorious. A final score of 34-11 gave us a win, a bonus point and a tremendous feeling of joy.
I, for one, have enjoyed playing for The Mighty Ath, this season and would like to start the thanks for Kyle, our beleaguered and much appreciated captain, for his resilience and commitment to this ragtag mob.
Oh, and boy didn't we look good... ;)