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14 Jan 19: Rookies to the rescue

Rookies to the rescue! After the latest round of matches when our top teams huffed and puffed but just couldn’t blow that ball down the korf, we had to rely on the rank-and-file to lead the way.

Starting with the startling news of T1’s shock 14-9 defeat to Phoenix 1 on Thursday evening. Not sure what happened there actually. Not so much a Hollywood tale of betrayal, bewilderment and deceit but more a case of bad luck, lethargy and darn tight marking on a small court by a decent opposition. There were goals for Ross, Molly and Jonny but consternation on the faces of all as that ball just wouldn’t go in and no quarter was given. Alas, a lack of subs curtailed our ability to switch players and divisions. The April return leg in the wide-open expanses of the Perse will hopefully be a tale of vengeance, passion and a settling of Korfing debts, starring a cast of eight and a few subs. That does make things tight at the top of Division 1 between Tigers, City and Vikings too – which is exciting, is it not?

Things are uncomfortably tight at the foot of the Premier League too and we don’t want that. The NL team were up against Kingfisher on Sunday – a team we have previous lost heavily to and who are a benchmark of sorts for us. It would be interesting to see how competitive we would be against them this time….and we were just that for three quarters of the match, drawing level just after half time and keeping within two goals until near the end. It was a great, sweat-drenched, ankle-twisting effort from all, forcing the opposition into conceding lots of free passes. Pinpoint accurate shooting – particularly in the first half – made this an extremely entertaining encounter. It really was anyone’s game until we ran out of steam, accuracy and attacking ideas as the second half wore on. Once Kingfisher opened up a three-goal lead near the end, there was no coming back. A late flurry of goals for the opposition gave the scoreline a slightly unfair representation of the balance of play. However, it bodes well for some key encounters against KV, Nomads, Birmingham and Bristol in the coming months. Let’s hope Mother Liv of the Blessed Swollen Ankle effects a swift, miraculous, Keira-like recovery and is back running around soon. Martyr to the cause as ever.

The SERL team were up against Kingfisher’s imposing SERL team afterwards. They’re battling it out with Knights’ SERL team for top spot and they are another good benchmark for the club’s strength in depth. We lost 15-21 but that’s a lot better than last year. Caitlin was at it again, banging them in, scoring five. Thomas was in full glorious, joyrider-on-bulldozer mode, stamping on every floorboard and driving his defender to distraction. General James Sawyer marshalled the rebound once more and scored three, to boot. Rosie and Molly were loomed over by muchlarger opponents but did they care? Not a bit. They shrugged their shoulders and got on with… whilst Rob ‘haggarted,’ which apparently means to score a few and holler ‘Tight’ in a loud but gentlemanly manner and then have some tea and scones afterwards.

Anyway, leave it to the under-14s to bring home the bacon (or a Greggs vegan alternative.) Anyone on social media will no doubt have heard how the under-14s beat the mighty Bearsted 9-5. Admittedly, Bearsted were short of a player but playing against seven in such a small venue is still a challenge. We also tamed the flaming-hot Norfolk Dragons 11-7 to give us a chance of retaining the crown. Well done all, including goal-scorers Martha (7) Lavinia (5) Phoebe (4) Ollie (3) and Theo (1.)

T2 also had a comfortable 15-8 win over Division two challengers City 4. Mr A14 Alex Valentine was back in action, under that basket and popping out like cuckoo to pop in two goals and keep one of their danger men busy all match. Rachael was also busy running her girl endlessly and winning penalties for Ollie to pop in. Low-trajectory Llewelyn skimmed four more flat stones into the korf (one from seven metres, no less – as requested by Coach Rhodes.)  Down the other end the Carswell/Roberts-phenomenon was purring along nicely once more. These two are like chess grandmasters when it comes to running-in shots. They anticipate the move three passes in advance. They’re running in before the feed even knows it…and when you have Big Nick gathering and feeding, that happens quite a lot (Nick, incidentally closing in on his namesake with a goal of his own.)

There was success also for T3 last night in Ely. After a complex and technical team travel plan, the T3 caravan got to Ely and raced into a 9-0 first half lead against V3. They took their foot off the pedal in the second half somewhat to see it out 12-2. The word on the street is that the Boss Jenny is happy with her long shot hat-trick (which doesn’t mean those Tigers bills don’t have to be paid though.) Caroline was Neymar-like for her ability to win penalties (without the theatrics of course.) The Zo-bot tucked those penalties away and raided the Vikings cupboard for another few goals (she craves the goals – next up, she’ll be getting the designer sports trainers…..Chris can advise.) Martha, on the other hand, had already filled her boots with goals in the morning so restricted herself to just a few this time. We were also treated to another unexpected outing from the Brian and Nigel Clough of the korfing world, Steve and Louis Clarke. In the second half, Louis was linking up well with young Max, creating plenty of good assisting and rebounding opportunities. The old Clarke spark has been re-kindled, it seems…. And there’s young Max again, in that feed position, making it all happen around him. The only question now is who will finish higher in Division two – T3 or T4. They are battling it out in the top half of the table for bragging rights and it’s too close to call.
We’ve got a weekend off from playing now…..unless you’re playing at the Inter-Area in Harrow.

23/01/2019 2 U2 vs T4 Cambridge University Sports Centre 2000
27/01/2019 SERL CITY vs TIG2 Perse School for Boys 1120
27/01/2019 PREM TROJ vs TIG Trinity School Sports Centre 1245
27/01/2019 2 T2 vs V3 Perse School for Boys 1900
27/01/2019 2 T3 vs V2 Perse School for Boys 2000
03/02/2019 PREM KFISH vs TIG Maidstone Girls Grammar School 1220
03/02/2019 SERL KFISH2 vs TIG2 Maidstone Girls Grammar School 1350
03/02/2019 1 T1 vs C3 Perse School for Boys 1900
03/02/2019 2 T3 vs C5 Perse School for Boys 2000
10/02/2019 U14 Tigers U14 vs Vikings U14 Cambridge Regional College 900
10/02/2019 PREM TIG vs KV Perse School for Boys 1245
10/02/2019 U14 Tigers U14 vs Harrow U14 Cambridge Regional College 1400
10/02/2019 SERL TIG2 vs KV2 Perse School for Boys 1415
10/02/2019 2 C5 vs T2 Impington 1800