League game 1

Well, a nice gentle starter for 10. Not!

New side to the league v well established league side.  Visiting coach starts off by saying “Ive had a shocking week” before telling me he’s lost 4 key players since Thursday – 1, 9, 10, 12. Great me thinks! Never one to take too much coach chat before the game. Usually, they want to plant the seed of doubt, usually against their opposition. So as ever, we find ways of responding without saying anything!

Warm day, bit of a slope on the pitch.  First half pretty instense. Home side score first with great try – big Samoan (prob) centre waltzed 40m+ through a few holes.  Visitors head back into it. Driving maul, phase to phase – good stuff. Home side try to disrupt – once, then again 10m out.  Severe warning – next one goes. Perhaps a little lenient.

Next major play is visitors attacking just over 10m line. Big centre high tackles. Not a yellow in itself, but takes a 10 min spell for his forwards!   Not an easy one to manage from a spectator viewpoint. Crowd think Im harsh. On its own, Id agree, but try to point across pitch at various previous offenses to indicate its a team yellow. What else could I have done? Any thoughts?

Visitors come back with try just as the 10 mins runs out.

Second half tight. Discipline (physical and tactical) is pretty good. Ends up 13-13  as time clocks up. Visitors possession and go through plenty of pick-and-go phases. No pens, me’s hoping – working my butt off to make sure game doesnt end on my penalty. About 10 phases in – set up and drop goal. Not expecting it (idiot!) so have to move quickly to check it goes inside left upright. Spreaders-esq delay while Im in best position to award!

Personally, think 13-13 would have been a fair result, but pleased to say result wasn’t caused by me. Both coaches happy.

Worked hard on the issues raised last week, so my coach is pleased.  Await his considered remarks later on.

Got two weeks off now from panel activity – one my fault (RWC in Cardiff) but no games in my league next weekend. Will head back to society. Need a game so I can work on my sprints/match- fitness.

Any news from your end?

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3 Comments

  1. Tel

     /  4 September, 2007

    Faapulou Soolefai, known as “hats” is indeed Samoan. I think you had no choice but to reach for the card, perhaps raise three or four fingers in the air to indicate the number of offences that have led to the card prior to pointing out where they occured. This is going to be a tough league for players and officials this year, just look at Blackheath losing by a point at Manchester and last years 9th placed side beating the highest ranked team left in the league from last year in my game at Dry Leas.

    Reply
  2. Indeedy – no pressure eh! Had absolutley no doubt as to the yellow, it was the signaling involved. Good call on the 3 fingers though. Anyone else?

    Reply
  3. Bryan

     /  18 September, 2007

    If you’re fortunate enough to blow it up near the touchline, when you pull the player over be as near the touchline as possible so that his coach (and the rest of the touchline) can hear you reprimand the captain for his team’s lack of discipline. It may help facing the touchline as you chat with them, but be careful as you may have your back to both teams (if they’re too close, you could have a potential flashpoint behind you). Focus mainly on the captain, as he is the stake-holder and needs to control his team better. The fact that this particular player is the one in the bin is as a result of the entire team and not this player alone, etc.

    If your only worry is the crowd watching and not the 30 players playing, you’re in good hands.

    Reply

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