Wednesday night saw me rushing from a cricket committee meeting, while Yanni and Jamie had training, to the other side of the city during the end of peak hour, just for a game of hockey. The Pazzo and Ivy were at Ivy’s cricket match, so I took the boys, after they finished training. Usually they ask to come to watch me play hockey, but of course, tonight nobody wanted to come!
Surprisingly, we got there with enough time for me to change my top and socks. We were the away team and given the other team’s main colour is black, like ours, our alternate strip was needed. I had time for a quick warm up run, even a quick hit up. Mum arrived to watch the first 15 minutes, she was en route to choir practice and couldn’t watch the whole game.
Finally the game got under way and yes, I was left wing. We were one short, right wing was the position we were missing. I started with the usual, running up and down the wing, not getting too defensive, staying away from their defenders. Listening to the calls and doing as I’m told. I touched the ball a couple of times, but about half way through the first half I was swapped to right half back. The reason was that the right half isn’t as fit as me and was tiring (I’m not super fit, but can run for 1/2 a game, it gets dodgy after that). Now the fun began. When I first started playing hockey I was a half back, so this was like putting on an old comfy glove. Off I went. Tag the opposition wing out of the game, no, make that the Inner, tonight. Their wing was too high so our full backs took care of that job. Free our Inner, to allow them to attack and score goals. Hustle, hassle the inner, make position to help get the ball out of our defence. Suddenly I found myself with the ball more often, and I was able to get it past some of their players, or just bump it into their feet for a free hit, or (my personal favourite) tangle them up so they obstruct me and I get the free.
The opposition were getting frustrated. We were scoring goals, we ended up with 5. They scored one. Their tackles were getting worse. At one stage I had three people tackling me. I hurdled one stick, the other 2 hit me in the front of the ankle one after another, right underneath the shin guard. It hurt. A lot.
Another win. More confidence gained (the reason I chose to play in this team was to prove that I have some skill and can still play a decent level of hockey, and of course charm my team mates with my amazing personality, so they want me in the team for the winter season). Next week we play our arch rivals who we beat in the grand final of the more serious and prestigious winter season. It’s also the last game of the year.