Last week saw the Narwhals take on Beckenham 2’s in the London League. Our first experience of the new London League rules and our first failure to grasp them. A sturdy 9 turned up for the game, crucially buoyed by the first appearance of the season by Dan “Iron Man” Bedford. Clearly Nick challenging his record for the year was causing him some concern… Rather unhelpfully, both our goalkeepers were on holiday, so Gary “Gareeeeeeeeeee” Bowen, in the style of Shakespearean tragic hero, volunteered to go between the posts.
Pre-game we had a nifty little team talk. “Remember the new rules” we said loudly several times, “don’t let them shoot from corners, don’t foul them from behind. Job done.”. Oh how we wish it was that simple…
In honesty I don’t remember much about the game. They kept beating us on the counter attack and if we managed to get back and defend properly, we were picked off from distance. Whilst performing an admirable job between the sticks, Gary was very unlucky with some heavily deflected shots flying past him. Beckenham were also equally good at finding the top corner!!
Shute and Bedford shared the pick of the goals with Gamble and Richards chipping in with their own efforts. Holah made a triumphant return with a typical major and Finch Jnr gave away a spectacular penalty, absolutely nailing the pit man after being turned. Congratulations on putting yourself in firm contention for the Catas!!
Scores were 6-10 at the half; 10-18 at full time.
Man of the Match went to Bedford for his first appearance of the year. He did all the things we expected – growled grumpily from the pit, told us we were all rubbish, questioned why he played with us in the first place and scored a few goals. He also won Moment of the Match for a delightful lob into the far corner (of the goal). Not to be confused with one of my shots that went into the far corner of the pool…
Fluffer this week could have been a close run thing with the award being shared. Sadly for one of the pair, we were sympathetic to the one who took the bullet and went in goal. Despite having been warned of shots directly from the corner, and with Weeble’s shouts of “watch him, don’t let him shoot!!” still ringing in his ears, this member of the team decided to turn his back on the Beckenham player swimming to take a corner. Within a moment, the shot was taken and the ball was in the net. The narwhals fall foul of the new rules for the first (and definitely not the last) time this year. Congrats Charles, you win!!
Hopefully we will do a better job of trying to win the game next time.