Ladies 6s Just Lose Out to Epsom
By Giselle Cooper
Ladies 6s 0 – 1 Epsom HC L3
It was an early start for the Ladies 6s last Saturday with Tiff already offering the team some energy efficient light bulbs so not only as a team do we win hockey matches (we will) but we also save the world!
With no Lily 'Wizzy' Craigen available to conduct the warm up it was over to Ruth 'LeanIn15' Fraser to get the team into shape ready for a win! The music was pumping, Sinead was complaining, the tension was rising as we stared down the opposition who had an average age of 14. It was clear to the team that the music selection to get us hyped up was phenomenal, not only because Sinead made the comment, "I don't recognise a single one of these songs" but also the opposition deciding to warm up right next to us so they could hear the bangers! Ruth had the team working hard, making us sprint in the warm up, Maisie kicking her legs up as high as the sky, we looked ready. We then started firing shots at Marlijn, the most accurate the forwards have been all season! We were READY!
Okay so the whistle goes, we are already in a better place than the week before with everyone remembering to wear shin pads and bring their sticks onto the pitch! We start off a little hectic and before we’ve had a chance to settle Epsom have put one in the net. Our leader and captain Nina Daly was providing the team with clear instructions that we needed to get a bit more focused and get our heads in the game. Nina was the real superstar of this match. Since becoming a Daly her skills have improved – some may say drastically, others may say it's given her a new opportunity to use the famous name to score goals (waiting to see this in a league match!).
During the game we worked well as a team… okay some questionable passes from the back line with a few in the air, some crazy allegations that one member of the team doesn't know where to take a 16 from (thanks for spreading an untrue rumour Sinead!). Tiff did her usual of sliding across the astro like children at a school disco after consuming sweets. On the odd occasion she slid missing the ball as well as the players – this is always entertaining to watch!
Jess Tallent didn't argue too much with the umpires and only nearly received a stern word from Chrissie so we can also call that an improvement. Jess O'Hara, a new member of the gang, has slotted in perfectly to the backline and takes after most of the team with the reassuring look of panic when taking a side line. Obviously already mentioned Sinead but she, as usual, was giving instructions to which no one was listening. Shout out to our wonderful keeper Marlijn for taking Sinead out but also keeping the backline calm during short corners and saving some goals.
The mid line was looking fit with Evie working hard as usual, running up and down and around players. Alex was also covering miles on the pitch and stealing the ball from the opposition out of nowhere. We've already mentioned Nina and that she is definitely better at hockey now she is a Daly. Newbie Loren is also a fantastic addition to the team, I am sure she is wondering if we ever win games, I promise we will get there! Lily came a little late but she never lacks enthusiasm whether it's for the beers after the game or for running up and down that sideline. Anyway, the midfield did a lot of running and got shouted at a lot because Epsom always had millions of players on the pitch and no one was sure who to mark.
Now for the forwards – my one suggestion would be less swinging of the stick and more pushing but we all have things we can improve upon. Up the front we've got Val, Ruth, Jen and Maisie. Val is the feisty one, if the umpires or the opposition aren't behaving it won't take much and our Val would have put them straight. Ruth (my wife) also not one to mess with, agile and ready to pounce at the goal, I would suggest you watch out for the stick swing. Jen – I bet you haven't seen a better one-handed player even when your boyfriend gives the half time talk asking everyone to, "go back to basics and put two hands on the stick". Maisie is a runner, she is everywhere, and I do wonder how she can see with the way her hair whips back and forth. The forwards are getting ready for many goals in the upcoming games and we can’t wait to see it.
So, in summary we lost 1-0 but we met for drinks back at the club and we got to laugh about it all that evening!
POM: Nina Daly
DOD: Giselle Cooper
Massive thanks to Philpo for stepping in as coach and providing some much needed direction and to the wonderful Chrissie for her firm but fair umpiring! Also great match teas, chicken and chips can't be beaten!