The flock of talented sparrows began their warm up in the typical fashion, manoeuvring delicately across the pitch with style and grace, passing the ball and scoring stylish goals when their brave and honourable defenders allowed. On the other half of the pitch was a thunderous pounding on the floor, as the goliath force of the Hill-folk prepared for war with their rivals, both teams unbeaten at this point.
As the referees briefed both teams for what would undoubtedly be a titanic clash, the two tribes lined up opposite one another, adversaries face to face. In that moment, as the brave and valiant sparrows looked their opposite numbers deep in the eye, it seemed that time slowed; before coming crashing back into focus again as the goal keepers crossed and the teams took their positions on the field.
Referee and renowned official Pete Compton adjudicated the first face off. Pete was later heard remarking about his concern for Sparrows FOGO Tom Roach, who began the game muttering wildly about pickled eggs, before flicking the tiny white sphere as far away from himself as possible.
The Tooting Beck tribesmen appeared out of the mist, taking shape around the intimidated Sparrow’s goal. The force of the Hill-folk’s attack was impressive to behold, even the most seasoned of warriors in the Spencer back 7 looked to falter ever so slightly before the battle begun. Suddenly, in the distance there was gun-fire, and the match was upon them.
The Sparrow’s lance-wielding defence made light work of the Hill-folk, and soon the ball made its way up to the attack. A flutter of quick passes saw the flock bat their first goal into the Hill-folk’s net, and the tone was set.
Multiple members of the Sparrows began to arrive at the party, seeing goals erupt in a puff of smoke from Eddie Vita, and a lazer focused finish from J Darkins. However, in every battle there are casualties, and as the Sparrows began to find their groove William Walker was cruelly cut down by one of the Tooting-tools.
It wasn’t long before Jonny ‘fan favourite’ Clark and Tom ‘LSA’ Leahy let their emotion get the better of them. As the ball dropped neatly on the Sparrows crease the pair looked longingly at it on the floor, presumably wondering what their fallen comrade would most like them to do. As if from nowhere an un-orthodox looking attacker wondered unchallenged onto the crease, flicking the ball pointedly into the top corner. The sparrows looked at one another, concerned, what would happen next?
Robert ‘I work from’ Holmes would not allow his men to falter, and through a combination of anguish for his fallen team mate and disappointment in his co-captain, he quickly took the initiative. Like a flanking Paladin the Sparrows attack cut through the Hill-folk like butter, seeing inspired leader Homes smash goals relentlessly into the back of an increasingly worn Hill-folk goal, often accompanied by a blood-curdling cry of anguish.
Before long everyone was at it. Midfielder Tim Holdsworth was in such a hurry to charge at the opposition’s net he couldn’t even wait for the whistle before he was up from the face off and sprinting fast at the Hill-folk’s leader Rhydian. The defenders were next to push forward, hampered only by midfielders yet to grasp the difficult lacrosse off-side rule. Recognizing this new found gusto, Rob ‘I don’t do attack’ McAlhone found himself an uncharacteristically nice finish, energizing the largest crowd to attend the Sparrow’s nest in three seasons.
Before long, time ran out and the Sparrows were left panting, standing atop a pile of brow beaten and un-exuberant Hill-folk. For today Cpt. Holmes’ and Cpt. Leahys men had done their duty, and they could retire to the bar for the traditional drinking games of their fore-fathers. A job well done.
Final Score – 15-2
Rob Holmes – 7, Tom Leahy 2, Ed Shee – 2, Joe Darkins – 1, , Eddie Vita – 1, Tom Roach – 1, Rob McAlhone – 1
Author – Tom Roach