Three in One

[EDIT – We have three “brief” reports for you here. Stats Master has got a little slack and needs to sort himself out. He has also been distracted by the psychedelic new trunks sported by the Narwhals in their most recent game… only to be outdone by Orca who were debuting their brand new PINK away hats. Nightmare]

November 15th Stats

Crawley – London League – Home – Lost – 17-9

We played Crawley in October. It didn’t go very well. All I have been told is that Matt Finch was awful and everyone else played brilliantly. Kudos to Dr Woody for getting 4 goals. Shame on Punchy Holah for getting 3 majors. Due to a lack of votes, no awards from this game.

London Citizens – Thameside Cup – Away – Victory – 19-14

With the help of a handsome handicap advantage and Charles’ Labour sponsored Tie Pin, the Narwhals powered through into the next round of the Thameside Cup. Probably to play Avondale 2’s who will have a 5 goal head start on us despite beating us every time this season… Not much to say about the game to be honest. The pool was awful, Matteo got to play in a shallow end for the first time since he was 7 and we all went for a Curry afterwards. Man of the Match was Andy Ogg for playing in goal for most of the game and keeping a clean sheet in the 3rd quarter. Moment of the match went to Nick and Dan who spent 2 minutes of the last quarter playing keep ball in the shallow end. Fluffer went to Charles for a reason I cant remember. Probably the tie pin.

London Orca – Thameside League – Home – Victory – 24-6

Narwhals cruised to victory here. Very good job. We tried an innovative substitute plan where nominated individuals shout at you to get out. It was very successful with John Holah being subbed after 30 seconds. Rob Dickinson hogged the goals, Nick did all the assists. Good thing we count those… Man of the Match went to Chris “Kingpin” Mann for his hattrick and for finally putting those hours of being top of the arc to good use. Moment went to Rob Loveless for something I can’t remember and Fluffer went to Charles again for missing an open goal. Pick yourself up TJ!!

 

As we approach the end of the season, the stats competition is hotting up. Goals has not been in doubt since February, but the Catas Trophy is fully up for grabs. Three players sit on 15 majors, two players sit on 14 majors – it will come down to Brutality Rating. Fluffer seems sown up but there is still time. Messers Gimili and Blotto are considering new awards for the Christmas dinner.

Until next time – Forza Narwhali

The folly of Narwhals

[EDIT – This report was poetically drafted by Gary “Gareeeyyyyyyyyyy” Bowen. Points for working out the source material. A less than convincing display against Penguin… Better luck next time.]

October 16th Stats

London league, London league, / London league was carnal, / All in the pool of Doom Swam the ten Narwhals. / “Forward, the Narwhal team! Charge for the goal!” they said. / Into the pool of Doom Swam the ten Narwhals.

“Forward, the Narwhal team!” / Was there a man dismayed? / Not though the referee knew / Someone had blundered. / Theirs not to make reply, / Theirs not to reason why, / Theirs but to grab a thigh. / Into the pool of Doom Swam the ten Narwhals.

Shots to the right of him, / Shots to the left of him, / Bouncers in front of him / Volleyed and thundered; / Stormed at with polo balls, / But boldly he stayed in goal, / Into the pool of Doom, And to the mouth of hell / Swam the ten Narwhals.

Flashed all their torsos bare, / Flashed as they drew in air / Clinging to the oppo there, / Charging the Penguins, / while All the crowd wondered. / Plunged in the fractious spray. / Right to the goal they play / Narwhals battled Penguins. / Reeling from the tight defence / Shattered but never spent, / Yet again they swim back, / but not all the Narwhals.

Shots to the right of him, / Shots to the left of him, / Bouncers in front of him / Volleyed and thundered; / Stormed at with polo balls, / And one by one each Narwhal falls.

They that had fought so well / Came through the pool of Doom, / Back from the mouth of hell, / All that was left of them, Still went to the pub…….

So did their glory fade? / O the wild charge they made! / All the world wondered. / Honour the effort they made! / Honour the Penguin raid, / Noble ten Narwhals!

 

[EDIT – sadly we were beaten 25-7 by Penguin. It wasn’t a brilliant game and wasn’t much of a contest, but still some highlights. Loveless brought a fan with him and did his best to show off… duly grabbing 5 goals. For that effort he got man of the match. Moment went to Loveless again for one of his superb shots – not hitting the post this time. Fluffer went to Charles for some dreadful passing. The less said about that the better.

Other positives – Matteo played in his first game for the Narwhals, initiating himself into our growing Italian contingent. A delightful link up with Oggy led to Matteo recording his first assist. Shame we don’t record those… Welcome to the club!! ]

Until next time – Forza Narwhali!!

It was all going to plan, until the last 2 minutes 38 seconds

[EDIT: Due to multitude of reasons, the match reports are again late. Sorry. Here is the first of two reports – game-fully penned by Mr. Blotto von Poo-Shute. The stats will accompany the next report. Recently I have found it much harder to get these up on time… it was all going so well…]

London League vs. Enfield 2’s…

The Narwhals quite literally threw away the win in this game, letting a 2 goal lead slip in with 2 minutes and 38 seconds left on the clock. A real shame considering the rest of the game went pretty swimmingly.

In the first half, the teams went horn to horn, with the score at the end 7-6 to the Narwhals – Holah with a major per quarter as would be expected. Goals from Loveless, Dickinson and Finch, plus 4 from Shute giving them a slender lead.

The third quarter was a tight affair, and the handbags came out with 5 majors, 2 for us and 3 for the visitors including their number 10 being wrapped for calling the ref a C***. Surprisingly Holah avoided anything in this quarter (must have been on the bench). Unsurprisingly both teams only scored 1 a piece despite the man ups. 8-7 to the Narwhals going into the final quarter.

The fourth quarter started well, with Shute grabbing his 6th to put the Narwhals 2 goals up. Goals from Loveless, Finch and Rt Hnr KT, with 3 in reply from the opposition put us 12-10 ahead with 2 minutes and 38 seconds on the clock. This meant, if we used our full 30, they would have to score on both attacks to even draw the game.

But we only need 2 minutes and 38 seconds to grab a shotgun, put it in our mouths and pull the trigger. Some disastrous passing out from the back from Andy “Stones” Winterbotham and Matt “Otamendi” Finch resulted in a pass straight to their attacker who simply swam in and scored. Even more disastrous was Shute had just returned from his exclusion and was completely free on the left… hearing aids needed perhaps?

With 20 seconds left on the clock, Loveless did what was needed and took a foul on half way. Instead of picking up the ball and lobbing it to someone else to hold on for 5 seconds, he decided to have a chat with the ref. This resulted in their attacker simply taking the ball and swimming in to score. 12-12 with 5 seconds remaining.

Face palm. A draw snatched from the grasp of what would have been a good win.

A full car on the long drive down through France and Spain in this game, with Garyyyyyy driving, Oggy navigating and Chrissy Mann napping in the back. Man of the match was shared between Shute and Gamble – for strong attacking and defensive displays respectively. Moment was shared by Rob L and Nick for a delightful lob shot/pass to the back post which was delicately flicked in for a cracker of a goal. Fluffer as shared between Finchy and Rob for essentially losing the game for us… [EDIT: Harsh but fair…]

The proroguing of the Narwhals

[EDIT: Report 2 of 2 from RtHon Charles King-Tenison. Following an exciting few weeks for British Politics, the Narwhals decided to have a far less exciting game vs. Avondale too. Remember, Brexit means Brexit, votes mean goals and that Charles struggles with Cider… Order!! Order!!]

September 15th Stats

Last Wednesday saw a defeat of the Narwhals majority Government in the House of Whitgift, by the Opposition Avondale party. A surprising defeat not relating to the good officiating by the speaker Stuart Marsh. The Narwhal Government was defeated mostly due to poor defending against Avondale’s weak, loopy votes and lapses of individual focus during debates.

There was some good performances – notably the RtHon Member for Dickensington. Having recently crossed the floor from the opposition benches to join the Narwhal’s Government. He successfully won three votes and was unanimously proclaimed Most Valuable Politician on the Narwhal’s benches. The RtHon Member for Dickensington’s performance was fantastic with a high calibre of votes along with a high quantity.

Whereas the usually prolific RtHon Member for Bedford was lacklustre. Normally passing many votes, the RtHon Member for Bedford continuously failed to register votes, walking into both sides of the door frame to get into the voting booth but failing to land any meaningful or accurate votes – especially when considering his usual voting records. Hence the RtHon Member for Bedford only secured two votes but could have possibly gained many more with a little more luck next session. The RtHon Member for Bedford did however avoid getting elected as the Minister for Fluffery as the RtHon Member for Wimblebotham had a poor performance. The RtHon Member for Wimblebotham tried to defend the Narwhal Government against Avondale’s counter arguments but many of the opposition’s votes went straight over his head!

The most entertaining moment in the House of Whitgift was the variety of moments of the Parliamentary Session. A vote was passed by the Minister of Defence, the RtHon PooShute  (nicknamed by the media) ‘Shute first, ask questions later’, was helped over the line by bouncing ideas straight off the head of the RtHon Member for Gambleton.

Some members misbehaved and forced Speaker Marsh to prorogue them. The RtHon Members for Upper Finchly, Bedford and Gambleton all spent time prorogued. Even the Health Minister Loveless was prorogued once. While a world leader, visiting the Parliament over talks on Nuclear Arms deals, was also prorogued. North Korean leader Tim Jong Un randomly wandered into the House of Whitgift and was prorogued twice by the speaker Marsh!

Other members were in attendance but failed to vote a single time without the excuses of being prorogued. The RtHon Member for Lower Finchly, Father of the House, the RtHon Member for Halesbowen; and RtHon member for Kingston – who was believed to have spent all his time trying to get into the House of Lords and forgot about his responsibility to vote in the House of Whitgift.

Overall it was a defeat in the end for the Narwhal Government. However, the next parliamentary session could be more promising if the RtHon Members of Halesbowen, Kingston and Lower Finchly start voting and the RtHon Members for Bedford and Wimblebotham return to their normal voting form.

The “Ay’s to the right” have it. UNLOCK!!

The night of the burning eyes…

[EDIT: This is the first of two reports provided by our very own Lord of Chunderville – Charles KT. Sorry for the delay, he’d been hungover…]

Narwhals vs. Otter (06.09.19)

The Narwhals made a rather unsuccessful visit North to the heavily chlorinated seas of the University of London Pool to play Otter. A sad defeat of 13 to 9 left us traipsing back with only fervent hate of Otter Number 5.

The game, however, did not start so poorly with the opening quarter finishing 4-3, in our favour, and the end of the second quarter showing a close 6-6 draw.

The third quarter was more disappointing with us only scoring two goals despite receiving 4 man ups! Clearly, some practice is needed here!

While our defeat was complete in the fourth quarter as we were let in 4 goals only to respond with 4 man outs – and one goal…

Hence a rather lacklustre performance had lead to an exceptionally competitive competition for fluffer. Every single vote going to a different person (or Matt for two different things). So while the team certainly deserved a collective fluffer, Matt is the worthy winner of fluffer for a particularly fluffy all-round performance. The glorious moment came when Gio bizarrely sent himself out, having misheard the ref. Then Matt watched Gio get out rather than watch Otter play and score their unofficial man up.

The remarkably less competitive award for man of the match goes to Rob D for some classy defending (and drowning that f*cker number 5). With a special mentions for Dan, scoring all our goals, and Andy for not only attending when it was inconvenient for him but bringing supporter to cheer on the Narwhals in this challenging match!

Finally, a rather anticlimactic moment of the match goes to the collective effectiveness of Long-Shots with Rob D’s halfway shot being special! I’m glad to see that our Wednesday’s training on shooting from halfway was highly effective? And definitely the best use of our time…

Forza Narwhali

Better late than never…

[EDIT: The editor realises that there has been a severe lack of reports and stats posted recently. This is mainly due to his current employers decision to label the Narwhals website “unsuitable” for current security filters. We therefore have two reports for you – one from Crawley (A) where we were severely “Lenkied” and one from Croydon (H). The stats are from both games. Our newest arrival, Gio, is the contributor for the Crawley game. For everything else you get me!!]

August 16th Stats

Crawley Away – a bad player always blames the ref…

In the wonderful setting of the K2 Crawley 50m swimming pool, Narwhals had to surrender 17-9 to the home team.

Possibly due to the soft and quite relaxing pool lighting, the match started quite calm, with Crawley scoring the first goal of the game only in the late first quarter. We immediately equalised from the pit and then conceded another two goals, before reducing the distance with another goal from the pit – although someone claims that the ball did not cross entirely the imaginary goal line – which set the result to 3-2 for Crawley.

From that moment on, the actual chronological sequence of the goals is not very clear in the mind of the writer and considering that we did not get a copy of the match report from the table, the writer needs to improvise.

This confusion is also partially due to the quite interesting refereeing which followed, almost as “Interesting” as the one of Byron Moreno in the round of 16 match between Italy and South Korea in the 2002 World Cup (the writer is aware that this reference may not be familiar to non-Italians). Some of the “interesting” decisions included at least two goals assigned to the home team, with the ball not even getting close to cross the line (when will VAR be introduced in British waterpolo???), a penalty awarded to Crawley caused by our attempt to play 7-vs-7 (how did we dare?) following a substitution after a goal conceded (with the refs resuming the game when we were only six in the water, with the seventh player who was diving in) and few other penalties and major fouls – for both teams to be fair – which were supposed to follow the new rules, but actually did not really look in line with them.

However, we did our part and went in general confusion, offering too many counterattacks to Crawley which allowed their players to get 1-to-1 with Andrew in goal and set the final result on 17-9.

From our side, the goals were scored by Rob fluffer, including an amazing and memorable first goal from a corner, which deserves to be shown to future generations, 2 by Nick, in his last match as a not married man (CONGRATULATIONS!), 2 by Rob, including a stylish lob from the pit, and 2 by Gio, who also missed an easy chance after one of the many confusing ref decisions.

It’s also worth reporting the missed attempt from 2m by Rob fluffer which kind of balance his goal from the corner. Someone believes his hand was anaesthetised as he shot, although he claimed the ref blew the whistle (which does not seem very unlikely after all).

Other remarkable fact is that this was also the first game for George with the Narwhals – thanks for bringing some support on the stands!

[Edit – from that I can only assume that Loveless won the fluffer and other Rob won moment?]

Croydon – Home

Basically, I can’t remember much of the game other than counter attacks and a few stunning goals. To make matters worse, I only received three votes (excluding my own), making the mandate for awarding the prizes dangerously low.  Dan got man of the match, Zach got fluffer and Loveless/Oggy share moment. We lost 9-19 despite an attempted 4th quarter comeback from 9 goals down… Well done everyone. On to bigger and better things vs. Beckenham soon.

Forza Narwhali!!

His biceps are bigger than my head…

[EDIT: Sorry for the delay. I blame Mr. M. Finch who has been very busy doing many many jobs. Still, at least we have the report now. Stats will come with the next report (gripping encounter vs. Croydon II’s).]

Nobody doesn’t enjoy a cup run, especially the Tom Dwyer where our glorious Narwhals have recent history in winning it. So you can imagine that the crowds rocked up for the eagerly anticipated semi-final against a strong looking Guildford team, who included in their squad a Spanish international goalkeeper and a pit player who to quote our esteemed Gimli “has biceps bigger than my head”, but then Ed always did have a bit of a pin head so it could well have been true….

We had a three goal head start due to the handicap which on initial team match-ups looked exceptionally light, we expected to be in for a tough night!

The first quarter certainly seemed that way, Guildford racing into a 2 – 0 lead on the night before a well taken Rob ‘whippet’ Dickinson goal and a further Guildford goal left the Narwhals 4 – 3 up with three quarters to play. The Narwhals played well but were constantly thwarted by the Guildford keeper, making some excellent saves from Rob ‘no more exams’ Loveless at his near post.

The second quarter saw Guildford change keepers, inexplicably removing their Spaniard and replacing him with a keeper on par with Nick ‘4th warning’ Shute. Initially we were unable to take advantage of this (primarily due to us not realising quite what a step down he was in quality). The quarter was a ding-dong affair, Nick bagging a brace and a rare Gimli goal seeing the Narwhals go in 7 all at half time.

The third quarter saw our best polo, Nick bagging another 3 with useful additions from John ‘Catas’ Holah and Oggy scoring from a ridiculous angle, helped by the keeper pushing it into his own net. Guildford bagged 4 themselves but the Narwhals went into the final quarter 1 goal ahead and things were looking up.

Unfortunately Guildford switched keepers again in the 4th quarter. Despite this we continued to play some very good polo for 4 of the 7 minutes, a very well taken goal by your author and part time keeper, showing Rob L how to score at the near post against this keeper, coupled with a glorious Oggy goal made by Nick taking out two defenders and the keeper leaving Oggy with the easiest goal he will ever score, this was voted moment of the match. Alas it was to no avail the last three minutes saw the Narwhals fall asleep at the wheel and drive into a ditch. Two very soft Guildford goals saw them win the tie by one, the final score being 15 – 16 to Guildford.

Man of the match went to Oggy by one vote, honourable mentions to both Nick, John and Rob D. Fluffer went to John for dropping the ball with three minutes to play resulting in Guildford scoring. Messers Loveless, Finch (mi) and Mann seemed to have gone on holiday early, no doubt enjoying the Portuguese sun!

Forza Narwhali!

Mid-Season Stats Review (oh… and a win vs. Beckenham)

Evening all. As we hid the mid part of the season, it is probably worthwhile giving you a quick stats review for the last 6 months… Drum roll please…

BUT FIRST

We played a game vs. Beckenham. It was pretty good. We won by 16-11. Bedford showed up and moaned about his knee. It was like we were playing in 2018 again… Nick was Man of the Match for his 7 goal haul. Dan and Nick got equal votes for moment of the match – Dan: for a wonderful lob were he teed himself up and tippity-tapped it over the on-rushing keeper. Shute also got moment for a super length of the pool swim (past 2 opposition players) rounded off with a push shot. Sadly for him, Stef got fluffer for a dreadfully executed man up pass… Tut.

Anyway… Stats.

June 30th Stats (2019) June 30th Stats (2018)

Shute is way out in-front with 58 goals from 11 games (5.27 a game). This means he is ahead of where he was last year (54 in 13 – 4.15 per game) and also by virtue of games played, ahead of 2018 Dan Bedford (64 in 13 – 4.92 per game). Interestingly enough, this is in stark contrast to this time in 2017 when Shute was on 34 in 15 and Bedford was on 23 from 7. Clear year on year progression there.

On the goal scoring charts, Messers Ogg, Finch Snr and Gamble are also out-performing where they were this time last year. Even so, it seems there is little competition for Mr Shute, the Manchester City of goal-scorers. Another year, another golden shower… I mean hand.

Majors wise, the landscape has changed massively since 2018 and 2017. The traditional front runners of the contest John “Punchy” Holah and Gary “Fists of Fury” Bowen are nowhere near the top of the rankings. Perhaps they have cleaned up their act… more likely the Portuguese police have stepped in. The under-performance of these titans of brutality has left a gap for new blood to compete for the Catas-Trophy.

Zac “mid-pool major” Finch has (literally) pulled back the competition to surge up to the top of the charts. His 13 majors in 14 games gives him a Major per Game ratio of 0.93 and a frankly embarassing Brutality Rating of 4.33. Nonetheless, this puts him at the top of the Catas list. Compared to last year, he has excelled himself, beating his previous 8 from 14 (0.57 / 4.00).

The only heavy-weight to be challenging Finch Jnr at this stage is current Catas trophy holder Gimli Weeble, destroyer of rings. This years 10 from 11 (0.91 / 1.00) is a weak performance compared to last years 14 in 10 (1.4 / 2.33) but he is still in second place. New boy and vicious northerner Rob Dickinson is challenging in 3rd with 7 majors in 10 games. He needs to try harder if he wants a trophy this year!!

As a team, we have scored fewer goals vs. this time last year (178 vs. 204) and our goal difference is significantly lower (12 / 70) but I would put that down to quality of opposition. Majors wise, we play 66 vs. 89 – Holah and Bowen’s drop off in form clearly impacting out numbers there. Comparative number of trips to Portugal stays steady at 32 in 6 months.

The challenge for the Fluffer DVD and Where’s Wally stays strong with the usual suspects leading the field. With a busy 6 months of the season remaining, who can “last the distance” and “keep it up” to the finish line?

Until next time…

Forza Narwhali!!

The uniting in (un)holy matrimony of Enfield and TW Narwhals

[Edit: Apologies for the delay… I am sooooo busy. This report is from our epic encounter against Enfield back on June 10th where the mighty Narwhals staged a 4th quarter comeback to win in the last few seconds. At one stage we were 3 goals down in the 4th – a huge effort led to a resounding 12-11 victory.]

[Master Shute this week gives us the match report – a quick practise of his Groom’s speech to thank everyone for their attendance. He would appreciate any feedback you have…]

Firstly, I’d like to thank all of you for attending the game, especially those who travelled from the depths of south London all the way up to the top of the Northern Line. I know it was worth the trip, with an epic battle that went goal for goal all the way to the last 10 seconds, and the Narwhals emerging victorious by a single goal, 12-11.

Thanks to Gary for travelling all the way from Portugal to attend, I hope you had a safe trip home.

Thanks to Matt Finch for a solid performance in goal. A classic combination with Shute to get the winning goal.

Thanks to Geo Demari for bringing some Italian fighting spirit to the game. A punchy performance, with 2 majors to his name and a solid goal to add to his name.

Thanks to Tim Young for a solid performance for the team. Cruelly disallowed a bouncer in off the post by the ref giving a reversal in the pit.

Thanks to Dr Loveless for his goal contribution to the victory. It will go down in history as a perfectly executed palinka penalty, despite your claims it slipped out of your hand. Only losing out on moment due to the circumstances of the victory.

Thanks to Oggy for an excellent performance in the pit. They couldn’t handle it and a big 4 goals for the team.

Thanks to Best Man Gamble for his man of the match performance. 2 goals and some solid defending with no majors was enough to catch the eye of the fans.

Thanks to Shute for his 4 goals. Special thanks for his last second push shot that won us the game, for which he is awarded moment of the match. What a hero – the bride is lucky to have him.

Thanks to Zach for booking the table at Nandos before the game. Your contribution of 1 major, moaning about it and you own team telling you it’s the new rules wins you the award of fluffer for this game.

 

Forza Narwhali

The Avondale Double Header

We played Avondale twice in the space of two weeks. It was close, with the aggregate score 18-17 to Avondale. At times we played well, at times we didn’t. Our man-ups were awful, our man-downs were pretty good actually. Dubious refereeing on all fronts both home and away made for some interesting games.

The first fixture was the home leg at Whitgift. We snuck a last minute winner after a shot on goal was blocked with two hands by an Avondale defender. Up stepped Oggy to bury the winner with 14 seconds to go. What a hero!! Game was categorised by some great saves from Finchy (including 3 penalty saves) which earned him Man of the Match. Shute and Oggy shared Moment – Nick for a wonderful parabola lob (again) and Oggy for the aforementioned last minute penalty winner. Rob Loveless sadly won fluffer for wayward passing and shooting. (“who me?” you hear him ask…). Gamble was in close contention for a penalty/wobble double whammy – giving one away and then crying about it. Overall, it was nice to actually win a game – even though we made it super difficult.

The return leg game a week and a half later. This game was just as close and was characterised by Bedford getting beaten up in the pit with little/no return. The game became quite scrappy and fighty and despite Mr Shute’s claims of innocence, he probably did punch someone at some point… Sadly we lost by two goals, the final score 10-8. Man of the Match went to John Holah for some good fighting in the pit, moment of the match went to Shute who loves a lob vs. Avondale (you think they’d learn) and fluffer went to Finch Senior for some awful passing from goal…

Also, shout out to new boy Gio who has started his Narwhals career strongly. Our first Italian recruit, taking the Narwhals brand global!!

Until next time – Forza narwhali!!