Waltzing Matildas

If you take to google, late on a Saturday night, to research the two sports of hockey and soccer, you’ll come to a realisation that whether you’re looking at pitch size, playing structure, or dependence on the team unit, they are pretty similar games.

Both are based on continual movement and action with few opportunities for set plays (PCs and corner kicks) over the course of the game and are comparatively low-scoring affairs.”
– Comparing Aesthetics: Hockey and Soccer http://hockeybydesign.com/2014/07/comparing-aesthetics-hockey-and-soccer/

It seems fitting then, that a casual game of pick-up soccer before turf training, could be beneficial to assist with running patterns we would use in a hockey game. As an added bonus, the plan was that this would be some light running, intended to protect those players carrying niggling injuries and soreness from recent return to match play.


You know what the say about best laid plans…

The game of ‘murderball’ that ensued was slow to take off, but once the ball was thrown among a group of highly competitive athletes, it became surprisingly fierce. For all the similarities between the two sports, it was quickly evident that we had very little cross-over of actual technical skill. The strategy of play was kick, or be kicked. Followed closely by a general life rule I try to live by: avoid balls in your face. It is a truly shocking experience on every occasion.

Coming off the back of a well lubricated St Patrick’s Day, some of the squad were struggling more than others when taking to the pitch for our intra-club scratchy. This wasn’t going to stop anyone! The first third of game play saw the Bibs kick off, and really tap into the advice being handed out over the past few weeks at training. Valuing the ball, not rushing play, and finding teammates to make smart passes meant they held majority of possession. The Non-Bibs (NBs) didn’t let this stress them out, and pounced on errors, capitalising at the right moment to slot away a couple of early goals. As the thirds rolled on, and player numbers dropped, the NBs were able to showcase their dominance of the midfield and excellent distribution to hammer away at the goals. T-swift was back to her international best, bagging a bunch of sausage rolls thanks to some great team passages of play linking up nicely with Little Ducky & Doods Iguana. When the legs were well & truly done, the day was called. Shout out to Guest Coach Sarah for coming down on a cold Saturday morning!  

The team huddle at the end gave Gibbo an opportunity to stumble over an excellent double entrendre by congratulating the Bibs on taking it up to the more ‘senior’ team. The laughter that erupted from the squad showed that, depending on the choice of definition, you almost could have painted either team with this brush. I’ll leave it to you all to contemplate…


  1. of a more advanced age.
    “she is 10 years senior to Judith”
  1. of or for older or more experienced people.
  • of or for the final year at a university or high school.
  • relating to or denoting competitors of above a certain age or of the highest status in a particular sport.
    “McCluskey made an instant impact on her senior debut”
  • (in names) denoting the elder of two who have the same name in a family, especially a father as distinct from his son.
    “Henry James senior”
  1. high or higher in rank or status.
    “he is a senior Finance Ministry official”

With an impressive effort from all the girls on pitch, it was time to tick some ‘off field’ team goals, by heading for a happy, bacon-filled breakfast.

The biggest take away from the day, thanks to a severely embarrassing spelling incident, was the Phoenix realising there is one pile of ashes she may not come back from just yet, and has resigned herself to grovelling at the feet of the fourth in line for the trapping throne for a long while to come..

*Fines –
Buffy, for leaving her stick behind at training
Cass, for leaving her car keys behind at breakfast


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