Men's 3rd XI: Doughnut Forsake Me Oh My Darling
Sausages are so 2017 as Chris initiates a custardy battle
Nomads' collective bid to re-write the world food eating record books took an interesting turn at Ely on Saturday. No sausages available, a very nice pasty each, and no-one about to allow anyone else to muscle in and steal their lunch. No matter, there were doughnuts aplenty available on the table, and Chris unilaterally decided that these are the 2018 food weapon of choice. Let it be recorded that the bar has been put in place at six doughnuts. A creditable effort, certainly, but surely plenty of headroom for someone wanting to make themselves very ill indeed.
Before all that though, there was the burdensome business of a hockey match to get out of the way. Nomads arrived at the appointed place and time, having had their Christmas break extended to 6 weeks courtesy of the two matches either side of it having fallen victim to the weather. I was expecting at this point to be able to report that the well-honed and finely-tuned athletes of Nomads 3rd XI dropped straight into the groove and rolled out a devastating display of free-flowing pass and move hockey as though the South game was just last week. However, my expectations were cruelly dashed as we turned out to be, well, a bit pants really. Sloppy all over the pitch, slow in passing, making all the wrong leads, and generally not playing anywhere near the standards we had set for ourselves in December. Almost like we hadn't played for 6 weeks.
It started brightly enough, with an early short corner which Sean injected to Hoddo's wrong side. The first component of a successful Nomads corner thus duly delivered, Hoddo of course jumped up, took it on his open stick and slammed in a shot which the keeper was only able to deflect into the roof of the net. Geddin! 1-0, and perhaps the extended break was going to prove a positive after all.
Obviously it didn't, and we spent the rest of the game making unforced errors, not playing anywhere near as well as we can, and wondering what was for tea. But that aside, we didn't really have too many scares at our end, we created enough chances to have won more comfortably on another day, and we'll take the three points and worry about the performance another time.
Ollie frustratingly managed to pull another hamstring minutes before he was due to sub off, but on the plus side it was the other one and he now doesn't have any others left to pull. I meanwhile had the pleasure of trying to control a crisp 5m pass from Sean, who employed the textbook technique of wellying it at my standing leg at knee height. Just like we practice in the warm-up every week, thanks mate, just rubbing it again now and I can tell you that you made a proper job of that, no half measures there.
I'm sure a few other things happened over the course of the game but it is a bit hazy at this distance. I do know that we did our level best to throw the points away at the end by conceding what is becoming our trademark stupid short corner. Ely very sportingly refused to allow the ball out of the circle though, and that was pretty much the final action of the game.
And so concluded a successful if not entirely satisfactory afternoon. There are always positives though, the second biggest being that we have got that first game back out of our systems without any material damage to our league record, and the biggest being the look on Hoddo's little face as he realised he had scored the winner. And the doughnuts, it always comes back to the doughnuts.
Persistent rumours that the this season's club dinner has been replaced by some kind of triathlon involving sausages, doughnuts and Jacobs Cream Crackers were not being denied on Saturday, though when contacted for comment a well-placed source on the committee did add "for God's sake Pete, will you just piss off and leave me alone".
South next week, room for improvement on the pitch, and looking forward to the doughnuts, chips and beans to follow.