Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Dangers of Passion

We're close now, so close I can almost taste it. The start of the season is coming up on Saturday and I feel like I have been waiting an age for it to come around. But now, with the club day and the first training session out of the way the next Hockey action is that long-awaited first game!

I suppose I should bring you up to date with the club day first. It was an excellent turnout, there were enough men down to fill at least three of our teams, with subs, not too bad for a first get together of the season, with planty of other guys to return. There were also a lot of new guys down, who I'd like to welcome to the club. I covered competition for places last time and how new players help that and I would re-iterate what Captain H said at training (minus the expletives): that players are not judged on what they used to do or whose friend they may be etc. but on the effort they put in on a Saturday and on a Tuesday, that's the only way to make selection fair and fair is the only way selection should ever be in my opinion.

We've also started training, the first of our first team squad training sessions. Starting with an agility test was a bit of a shock to the system but I am really excited to see what Coach has come up with for us to do over the coming weeks and am glad of having the pitch time to work on our game. I'm positively brimming with excitement, I think most of the guys in the squad are. Our only worry is the potential reality check we face on Saturday.

For the first time whilst I have been playing in the 1st XI we have decided that this year we would enter the Cheshire plate competition, we looked at the teams involved and thought with some in our division and some a couple of leagues higher it would be a good test of our strength carried over from last season and a good chance to rate ourselves against stronger opponents. Well we certainly got our wish. Our draw in the cup sees us face a team that are currently competing six divisions higher than us. If hockey worked anything like the football pyramid (which it doesn't) we would be taking on a team playing in the conference. It's safe to say we are underdogs. But then there is the belief. It is this belief, this passion, which is the reason for the title of this post. We are so prepared and so primed and so ready to take on our first opposition of the season that there is a danger that we could overcook it.

Make no mistake, we want to win. But also make no mistake, we probobly won't. I'm not a defeatist but the harsh reality has to be put out there so that it doesn't bite quite so hard. Beating this team on Saturday is not one of our season goals, and so we have to make sure that whatever happens on Saturday it helps us move towards our goals. A far more constructive test in this game than going all out to win is to see how well the way we play and the composure and togetherness we have as a team can stand up to this opposition. I believe that in that department we have the potential to come out the clear winners. I hope that we can focus on playing our game, that would prove that we can do that against any team in our league, at anytime, in any place. That would be a much greater comfort to me than making sacrifices to compete with a team we are not competing with.

So that's the danger of our passion, not blowing up on day one, managing ourselves and giving our all, our way, not theirs. If we do that then we come away the winners. Would be nice to smash them though all the same!

I'll hope to update my (by now) thousands of readers with the result of this highly anticipated game sometime on Sunday.


  1. Bloody hell George, you're making the rest of us look bad! Clearly too much time on your hands...

  2. Thanks Mo, I think haha. It only took me about 20 minutes honest. I can waffle on pretty well when I build up a head of steam.