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A Football Season In The Life Of A Murraysworld Member - 2008 Season


Just hijacking Alex's thread once more lol

OH YEAH!  cmon yeah yay

* Table update.JPG (20.96 KB, 415x161 - viewed 326 times.)
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Apologies again for the lack of reporting. It has been exams/interviews etc over the last couple of weeks so things have been hectic. From next weekend though I will be back to it.
There's only been 1 game to report on anyway, 2 weeks ago. So I'll say something brief about that.
Played Three Kings Elk-Hider who were 2nd in the table and we really played well. We scored early in the first half and were playing the best we had played all season. Led 1-0 for ages and I played quite well too making 2 or 3 reasonable saves, particularly 1 from a goal mouth scramble. With about 20 minutes to go we were still ahead but were really up against it with all the play in our half. I just couldn't see us winning. Not the right way to think perhaps but based on experience from the season so far I thought to myself "we've played so well but I bet anything we now make 2 mistakes and lose 2-1."
Inevitably, one surge forward led to an unmarked striker getting one on one with me and finising well. And in the dying minutes a free kick came into the box and was finished off unchallenged at the far post. Absolutely heart-breaking loss but completely inevitable given the season so far.

Last week I had an exam on the Saturday afternoon so had to miss the game but the weather saw it postponed anyway which I was quite pleased about. It should get rescheduled to the end of the season so I don't have to miss a game anymore. And tomorrow's game has also been postponed due to horrendous weather this week. I'm also not too disappointed as I could do with a nice sleep in after the last few days in Wellington. Hopefully next week's game goes ahead which will be the first game for 3 weeks, and I'll get back into regular posting now I have a bit of a break from exams and interviews and everything.
[ Last edit by invisibleman18 July 04, 2008, 11:21 AM ] IP Logged

12/07/2008 - Game 13
Opposition: Metro Wong
Venue: Away
Kickoff: 1.00pm
Weather: Horrendous

Having played them away earlier this season this was officially a "home" game, however on the eve of the game the location was changed to one of their grounds. This was due to the weather as our home ground is carefully taken care of and when the weather is terrible, they don't like too many games on it. The ground we were moved to was, to put it nicely, a sh*thole. Worst field I think I've ever seen in my life with all sorts of patches of sand and the like in random places. However, same both both teams.

Hopes were not high with them being top and unbeaten and us having not been able to train or play for 3 weeks. Hopes were even lower when injuries and illness meant we only had 10 players turn up. Someone's mate came to watch and he was given a spare pair of boots and to make up the 11 he "played" up front in his jeans for the first 25 minutes until our striker decided to grace us with his presence. I say "played" but it was really only run around a bit as an 11th player. lol

Anyway onto the game. Weather was absolutey horrendous. Rain like I've never seen before. First half we played against the wind and we were never in the game. Whole game was down our end. I was in the action quite quickly making a pretty good reflex save from a cross, then another smart block minutes later. A goal was always coming and it did about halfway through the first half with the striker find his way through a gap and finishing well into the corner. About 10 minutes before half time the 2nd came. Cross from the right avoided everyone and the winger on the other side arrived to smash it in with a good finish. Just before half time they were down our end again. I made a good save to the left, parrying away with my top hand then parrying away again seconds later as the danger was not cleared. We raced down their end in a rare attack and our striker fluffed a one on one chance straight at the keeper.

In the 2nd half the rain was so heavy that it was coming down like bullets. We had the wind in our favour now but were still up against it. We held out for a while until about 15 minutes to go. Long throw flicked off the head of one of our defenders and was smashed in on the volley from 6 yards. Another chance came and their right winger fired low and hard towards the bottom far corner. At full stretch I felt it flick off my fingers and go wide of the post. One of my best saves ever but the touch was so faint everyone went back for a goal kick. 3-0 down in that weather, no point trying to take credit and say it's a corner. lol  I don't think I have ever been as wet and cold in my life as I was then and I've played in plenty of bad weather. Our left back summed it up quite well when we were setting up to defend a corner shortly before the end. He said "well I can definitely think of better places to be than here, 3 down in this sh*t." Another came with the last kick of the game. Shot from the edge of the box was deflected and I did well to make a block as I was going the wrong way, but the rebound was finished off.

Result: 4-0 Loss
Personal Performance: Good. Kept the score down, possibly in half but what does it really matter?

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The lack of reporting in the last 2 weeks has not been my fault. Last week was postponed due to the weather and same again tomorrow.
So that will make it 4 of the last 5 games postponed. Pretty much all training in that time too so have barely played in the last 6 weeks. My brother missed the one game that was on as he was very sick that weekend so he hasn't played for almost 2 months. Frown
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Sigh. Tomorrow's games all postponed again. We've been having ridiculous weather here recently. Horrendous storms over the last week or so and more predicted to come. This makes 5 of the last 6 games postponed so noone has played for ages. My brother has actually missed the last 2 that were on, once sick and the other time with an exam. Tomorrow should have been the last game of the season but because of all the postponements there are still 5 left! I doubt this one will get rearranged now. The other 4 have been so the season goes up to the end of August now but they don't usually go past August as at some point, many of the grounds get converted into cricket grounds for the summer etc.
I doubt all the rearranged games will go ahead anyway.
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Well that last one has been rescheduled so the season will go into September now. Tomorrow's game is on and it will be the first of the 5 rearranged games. I'm not all the confident of our team turning up though. Don't know if anyone else knows as I haven't been in contact with anyone since the last time we played (there's been no training due to the weather). Usually the guy who runs the team would text info but there's been nothing this week so I'm half expecting my brother and I will be the only ones to turn up tomorrow which will be very annoying as it's quite a far away game. Just texted the guy to make sure he knows it's on.
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09/08/2008 - Game 14
Opposition: Bay Olympic
Venue: Away
Kickoff: 2.45pm
Weather: Cold but calm

Unbelieveably the weather actually allowed a game! The first of the postponed lot.
As posted above, hopes were not high of a full team turning up. And when there was just myself, my brother and 2 others about 20 minutes before kickoff, things did not look good. By the time kickoff approached we had cobbled together 7 which meant we had to take the field, then another turned 2 turned up just as we were starting so we had 9 while the opposition had just the bare 11. For fairness, the rules say both teams should provide a ref so 1 does the 1st half and the other does the 2nd, although often the teams might agree for 1 person to do it if they are happy. These guys offered to play with 10 in the first half so one could ref, and we would ref the 2nd half, which was quite generous of them as we were down a couple of players.

So the game began and while they had much of the ball, we were keeping them away from our end quite well. They were restricted to just a few speculative efforts early on and I wasn't tested too much. We were getting into the game and had the better chances, even forcing a couple of corners. But with a man less, keeping possession for long periods was always going to be tough. About 10 minutes before half time we forced a corner, and took the lead from a goalmouth scramble. Straight away they were down our end with a good through ball and I managed to come out and smother it well just ahead of the striker. Things looked good right on half time when we were awarded a penalty for handball. Didn't see anything from my end. Thought it was a goal kick then suddenly we were lining up a penalty, but it was given by their ref with no complaints so it must have been pretty clear cut. Our goalscorer stepped up and sent it high and wide. Inevitably, straight from the goalkick they were down our end and with one defence splitting pass it was 1-1 with the last kick of the half and probably our chance blown. I am still sporting a bruise covering the whole top of my foot which resulted from kicking the post in anger as I walked off for the break. Whistle doh

Fortunately another of our players who has been injured for ages turned up during the first half to watch and agreed to ref so we didn't have to go down to 8. We were able to stay with 9 while they went back up to 11. In the very first minute they got down our end and a bullet volley from about 25 yards out was in before I saw it. Given how the season has gone so far I thought we'd blown yet another match and would end up losing 4 or 5-1. To our credit though, we remained solid. Most of the game was in our half as you would expect but we were keeping them out, and they were beginning to tire. With about 20 minutes to go we got a breakaway and a good through ball went across to the right, my brother ran through quicker than the defender and about 20 odd yards out, on the right of the area he hit it first time and it went up into the top left corner. Absolute screamer and I don't think I've ever celebrated a goal on the pitch as much as that one. We'd defended so well, and to get level with a goal like that, especially with it being my brother was amazing. However, my brother loves nothing more than telling a story and as we setup for kickoff the realisation set in that I was going to have to move out of home, because I'm never going to hear the end of this goal. lol

5 minutes later they had the pressure back on us. A good shot from the edge of the box forced me into quite good save at full stretch low to the left to concede a corner. From the corner, it was headed out to my brother who was about 30 yards out from our goal on the left. He played a great ball down the line and our left winger beat their defender for pace, got into the box and gave us an unbelieveable lead. How we had turned this game around with 9 men I do not know. It was all them from there, but all they managed was 2 or 3 shots that were quite comfortable for me. 5 minutes from time we got into their half, one of our midfielders played a ball over the top and our left winger got round the back to finish with an awesome half volley to seal an amazing win. In the last minute we cleared the ball to my brother on half way and he outran the last defender to finish a one-on-one quite clinically with a Thierry Henry like finish for his 2nd of the game. They must think he's been prolific this season when in actual fact he's scored just 4 goals, all against them. lol

Result: 5-2 Win
Personal Performance: Decent. No real chance with either goal and made the one difficult save required in the 2nd half.

I don't know how we won that 5-2 with 9 men. The whole game was in our half. They had almost all of the play and just tired out, allowing us to blitz them with 4 goals in the last 25 minutes.
My brother is the master of telling stories of his football and cricket exploits. In fact even as we got to the ground it was "oh I remember this place, I took an awesome catch here in .... game, and another time I hit the only 4 when we got skittled for 42.........." Every week there's a similar story when we get to whatever ground. lol
There is one quie famous catch that he often talks about where he took a stunner to dismiss one of his best mates who was playing for the big rival school but noone in the family was there to witness it so we've always assumed it's been highly over exaggerated. He was quite pleased that at least I was there to back up this story and it's going to get more airplay than that catch now! lol

Anyway, the weather has returned to form and tomorrow's games are all off. Rolling Eyes

[ Last edit by invisibleman18 August 15, 2008, 06:45 AM ] IP Logged

lol   What a win that was!!  clap clap
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Can't really be bothered posting too much about the last 2 games. Not worth the effort.

Last week against Three Kings it was 9 players again. We had a dream started going 2-0 up early in the first half. But 2 men down against a young and fit team, it was never going to be enough. It was an onslaught. The entire game was in our penalty area and we did well to keep it to 5-2. Made quite a lot of saves personally and they said I was player of the day afterwards. Not much consolation for letting in 5 though. I haven't been in a team who gets thrashed for a few years so that was the busiest game I'd had for a long long time. All the postponements and no training for about 2 months has not left me in great fitness and my whole body was sore all week. Struggled to get out of bed the next morning! lol

Today it was a similar story with just 8 turning up. Otahuhu are by far the worst team in the league, reflected by their position at the bottom. But with 8 men against a full team with subs, what chance did we really have? Not to mention 1 of our 8 was someone's friend and he couldn't even run, while another couple were sick and injured so their efforts weren't high either. 7-1 but with the chances they had it should have been double that. I was pretty fed up and one of our players offered to go in goal during the 2nd half as the game was a waste of time. So I had a 20 odd minute run around on the field. With 8 men, we didn't really have positions so I sort of started at left back/left wing, and found myself in the centre at times, and ended up out on the right at the final whistle. All over the place. lol Didn't even do too badly. Made a few tackles and passes, had a (pretty average) shot with the left foot and beat a player on the right to put a cross in. I think that was the first time I've been on the field for about 6 years! And the last time was in the opposite situation. 6 or 7-0 up at half time so had a run about and even scored a couple that day.

Should be 1 more game next weekend but 3 of the lot who turned up today said they can't make it so it will probably be defaulted in the week. Pretty dismal season overall. This team won the league last season only losing 1 game (which was to my old team). When we had 18 players at the first game and won 5-1 it looked like being a good season. But it seemed like once we lost a couple of games early on, they all gave up and stopped coming to training and stopped caring because they couldn't win every week like last year. Starting with 18 and finishing with 8, of which 1 was a fill in anyway is a pretty sad showing. There was a core group of 4 or 5 us who would always be there regardless of the situation, but with the rest of them it was always hit and miss as to whether they'd bother. And that was reflected in the results.

I'm not disappointed with the results as much as I am with the commitment. If you commit to a team, don't give up because of a couple of bad results against better teams FFS. At this semi-serious/semi-social level I don't expect to be in a great team with hardout training and brilliant players and wins every week. But when I commit to a team and pay my $100+ fees to join the club and make an effort to train despite a mountain of Uni work and studies, I do expect a team who cares and even if they might not be great, they at least turn up to training once a week, turn up to games and put in the effort. Will probably shop around for a new team next year as this lot are a waste of time. It will be the 3rd year in a row of doing so though and it's such a hassle to find somewhere as a goalkeeper. As an outfield player you can easily be slot into any squad, but when there's only 1 position you have to contact a load of different clubs and hope someone has a spot somewhere. A guy from the division above contacted me a couple of weeks into the season this year but of course I'd already joined this team. He did say to keep hold his details and contact him next year if I was looking for a team so might be worth getting onto him next year. Think
[ Last edit by invisibleman18 August 30, 2008, 07:31 AM ] IP Logged
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