Naughty Norton Begins Claiming Victims Let me preface this by saying that I arrived to training in a bad state. Syph had dropped a 12 kilogram medicine ball on my face, though this was largely my own fault for having little baby boy spaghetti arms that can barely lift a hockey stick. I then exacerbated this by taking a delicious bite of floor when I failed to support myself properly in something like a press-up position. As compassionate as ever Syph could barely suppress his cackles of pleasure. Bruised and humiliated and with nothing to snack on but loose raisins I joined the others to duke it out with Norton.
Training began with 'Special' Investigators Mace Windu and Danjo inspecting players' boots to find the muddy footed culprit that had besmirched Norton's beautiful surface, before settling on the innocent Juan Moloughney as a reliable scapegoat. In retaliation for this befoulment of her fine green fur, and with the damp and cold, Naughty Norton was misbehaving and the boys from Bankers were too inexperienced and inept to tame her. Everyone, bar possibly Alistair Cook who was born on a water-base, had forgotten how to play hockey. The only exception to this was a simple deflection drill which gave everyone the opportunity to look like an international striker, knee height, chest height, head height deflections whipping past a starstruck Off. Needless to say the speed and bounce messed a lot of people up. I don't know what happened to Blonde Bear, but he's broken. Josh Rimmer, equally broken. Mace Windu, ball to the jaw. Myself, deflection to the hand. At the time of writing there might be other silent victims who dare not speak up for fear of further abuse. This is without mentioning the psychological toll taken on players like Steelhammer who no longer trust their body to play hockey. Without a doubt, Naughty Norton won't be subdued readily. And finally... At the 5s-7s end Fridge wants the boys to go around the back more and attempt to penetrate the D from behind. I've been notified by the Club Captain that Fridge has experience in these areas after a misunderstanding with a vicar. Steelhammer stole Ched Evans' inhaler because nothing says “pranked ya” like an asthma attack. The unceasingly verbose Off dispensed wisdom to the uni boys on the finer points of making soup and Georges Moss defended his position in the 3s by unlearning how to aerial.
Bankers Perform as Expected! In other words we lost more than we won, but that's ok! Incrementally these losses are looking more confident and with some hard work we can turn Norton into a real home advantage and show the opposition just how naughty it can be. The Ladies 3s seem to have discovered it earliest with a seriously impressive 6-0 win over Halifax 4s who should be well-versed in a similar speed and bounce. Similarly, although it's not their most decisive victory, the Men's 4s beat Sheffield Hallam 5s 2-0 on Sunday to further demonstrate that Norton isn't going to be frustrating for long, as it was for the Men's 1s and 3s on Saturday. Both the 1s and 3s succumbed to similar quirks of the surface exploited by other teams. The 1s let a goal slip in that bobbled over Si's kickers, as has been predicted by all coaches and captains (not that Si personally would let one bounce over his kickers but that opposition teams will look for that style of goal). From the simple to the extravagant, Halifax 1s put two goals past the 3s by throwing long aerials towards our D and then hammering them home from the bounce, something to watch out for and expect in future and something we could learn for ourselves. Elsewhere Simon Yates masterfully withdrew the 7s from their game and, while automatically conceding the loss, saved his team from a point deduction, enabling them to move off the bottom of the table. Although unable to turn out a team, Simon has high hopes for fooling his way to top of the league. With their game cancelled some of the 7s stepped up to play under the floodlights of Abbeydale for the 6s and joining them was a small but committed band of fans. With Mace as ringleader the super-fans tastefully heckled Hallam, though Mace “Club Captain” Kirtley took the opportunity to repeatedly compliment the umpire on his choice of clothes, persisting until the compliment sounded like a bizarre desperate cry for attention. He did get his number though. As for the match itself the 6s played honourably with (player of the month) David Banting looking the all round stalwart and stoic defender. Young Callum made a nuisance of himself upfront effectively performing the Stevie G chip and run, and even Mole and Rupert seem to have been tempered slightly by old(er) age, preferring to play hockey than shout at people. The final whistle resulted in a 2-1 loss but if the 6s continue to look so dangerous on the break they'll secure a good place in the league. Success for the men then came in the middle of the club, with both the 4s and 5s securing strong wins. The men's 5s stomped Lindum 4s 6-0 and leave them to the 6s this weekend to deliver a further crushing blow. Rawhide has perfected the art of standing still and again scored too many goals, further raising the bar for anyone who wants to succeed him. Meanwhile in North Yorkshire the Men's 4s won 5-3 against Halifax 2s and, if they can fend off Ben Rhydding and Driffield, are looking like prime contenders to win their league. For the remaining Ladies teams the 2s were unfortunate in a 1-0 loss to Colne Valley 1s, though their loss is counterbalanced by an important win against Kingston-Upon-Hull 1s for our Ladies 1s, firmly earning their right to sit in the top half of their league. Finally, as already hinted at, the Men's 1s and 2s suffered losses to Leeds 2s and 3s respectively. That stated, both Leeds teams are 3rd in their league and neither Bankers side appeared outclassed. The 1s are generally performing solidly in the middle of their league and the 2s are yet to hit their stride scoring goals while facing consistently though opponents.
The journey to Norton begins in earnest now that almost everyone has been once. For home support this weekend don't forget that there is a stand and changing facilities/warmth nearby! 10:15 Men's 7s vs Chapeltown 4s 11:45 Ladies 2s vs Huddersfield Dragons 2s 13:30 Men's 2s vs Brigg 1s 15:00 Men's 6s vs Lindum 4s
Elsewhere the day begins at 10:15 away at Abbeydale for the Ladies 3s, later followed at 16:30 by the Men's 5s playing Sheffield Hallam 6s. At midday 12:00 the Men's 3s play Kingston-Upon-Hull 1s at Meadowhead, and at 13:30 the Men's 1s play Doncaster Men's 2s. Equally at 13:30 our Ladies 1s play Huddersfield Dragon 1s. All the games are close to home this week, it would be great to see some support at all matches!
The Banker - October
Have you read The Monthly Banker? On Sunday we launched the first Monthly Banker which looks at all the club happenings over the last month! It includes for the first time our SUBHC Team of the Month. Read it here Also includes:
A chat with Men's & Ladies Club Captains
News in brief
We still have a small number of SUBHC branded bobble hats available for sale. As the dark nights and cold weather has arrived these make great accessories on those cold training nights and match days. Please contact a captain or Christina Woods.
They're only £5!!!
Thanks again to Henry Dale for this weeks Banker...
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