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HAWKESBURY HISTORICALS GALA DAY
SUNDAY, 5TH MAY, 2013
The Charcoals travelled to Windsor to participate in Big Paully’s annual Hawkesbury Historicals Gala Day and what a turnout it was! There were ten teams including the Charcoals and Historicals taking part in the Gala Day.
Oatley Sown Oats
Dee Why Lions
Oakhill Withered Oaks
Penrith Legless Emus
Wahroonga Toothless Tigers
Most teams didn’t have full sides but that wasn’t going to detract from the enjoyment of the day. Composite teams were the order of the day and there were no shortage of teams volunteering to join the Charcoals to make a full side. The Charcoals were missing 8 to 10 players however still managed to field 11 players on the day.
It was great to see Rob “Romeo” and Phil ”Paris” Raymont make the trip to Deerubbun Oval. “Paris” hasn’t changed much since we saw him last at the 2011 Gala Day. He can still talk underwater with a bag of rapid-set cement in his mouth and it was difficult at times to establish whether he actually took a breath each time he opened his mouth to expound his pearls of wisdom.
The Charcoals were joined by a number of other teams during the course of the day to do battle against the opposition. Fantastic to have Marc and the Oakhill boys back us up on a few occasions. We just seem to lift a couple of notches when they are on our side.
There were some notable performances from Mike, Greedy, Bonk, Pom, Romeo, Lord Jim and Joe who took the ball up all day and solid back-up play from the backs despite uncharacteristic dropped balls and falcons from Morgs. Cliffy seemed to take an inordinate amount of time to get into any sort of rhythm. Mention was made of a bad vindaloo consumed on Friday night! He asked Morgs at one stage where he should be playing, facing in the opposite direction! However, once Starry stationed himself alongside Cliffy in the centres, cracks appeared in the opposition’s defence and they both made inroads down the field resulting in a try to God forbid, “Paris” Raymont. The versatility of the Charcoals players was also on display. Morgs, Paris, Mike, Joe and Romeo alternated between the backs and forwards and who could forget the lumbering turn of speed from Greedy out on the wing!
It was a solid workout on a particularly hot day and the Charcoals players accounted for themselves magnificently. Thanks to all those Charcoals players who turned up on the day.
Thanks to “Numbers” Fallon, our trusted Gear Steward who turned up on the sideline despite a blown fetlock and ensured the water bottles were full at all times. It’s commitment like that that makes the Charcoals the envy of other Golden Oldies teams. As always, thanks again to Hoges for his tireless commitment to refereeing duties when the Charcoals are scheduled to play.
The Worst and Dirtiest Award was presented to Big Paully of the Historicals and Club Captain, Mike “Pom” Begg presented the Whingeing Pom Award to Cliff Teki.
The Charcoals next game is on Sunday, 19th May, 2013. The Battle of the North Shore is hosted by The Killara West Pymble Limping Leos. Kickoff is at 1:30 pm at Lofberg Oval, Lofberg Road, West Pymble. Let’s have a big turnout from all registered Charcoals players.
A/Secretary & Vice President
EASTWOOD CHARCOALS V LINDFIELD FUNNEL WEBS
T G MILLNER RUGBY PARK, EASTWOOD
SUNDAY, 14 APRIL, 2013.
On an unseasonably hot April afternoon, the Charcoals assembled on the top oval at T G Millner for what was scheduled as a three-way contest against the Oatley Sown Oats, Lindfield Funnel Webs and Hunters Hill Cats. It was apparent after a lengthy and somewhat vigorous pre-match workout by some Charcoals players on leg, neck and groin extensions, dropped ball retrieval and copious amounts of liquid refreshments, that the Oatley mob wouldn’t be making an appearance despite assurances to our Club Captain, “Pom” Begg to the contrary. Further, we were advised late in the peace that the Hunters Hill Cats would only be playing one game during the year at the Charcoals Gala Day on 7 July, 2013. So that left us two teams short on the day and given that the Charcoals had a full complement of players, it was disappointing but that wasn’t going to deter us from enjoying the afternoon.
The BBQ and liquid refreshment stall was manned by our hairless Treasurer, Graeme “Dome” Read who is recuperating following the surgical removal of a ganguly from his left wrist and surgery to his right carpal tunnel to relieve the effects of spontaneous and inexplicable up and down motions with his clenched fist. Dome was ably assisted by the “Taranaki Terror”, Tiny Harrison who has sadly announced that he has hung up his boots and will not partake in any further games for the Charcoals. Some lame excuse was mentioned about grandkids, cracked ribs and crook back. Who could forget that focussed look, those beady eyes and assassin’s smile as Tiny lined up the poor unfortunate on the opposing side before cutting him in two and jamming him into the pitch. His authoritative presence on the field will be sadly missed by the Charcoals. Thanks mate for all your help and assistance both on and off the pitch over the years. We haven’t seen the last of Tiny, he’ll be helping out the Charcoals in other capacities.
Marty “Slabbs” Rodgers was nominated as stand-in Club Captain for the day in recognition of his recently-celebrated 50th birthday. He performed magnificently in the absence of our normal Club Captain “Pom” Begg despite having one-and-a-half hours sleep the previous night.
The Charcoals would like to acknowledge the attendance of Oakhill Withered Oaks player Graeme who helped bolster the numbers. We also welcomed our newest player, Flavio Romano to his first game with the Charcoals. Welcome mate (Nick name yet to be bestowed!) I hope you enjoyed your first hit out.
As the Funnel Webs did not have a full side it was agreed that we would field two combined teams of thirteen players. Some Charcoals players volunteered to play with the Funnel Webs to ensure they had a full side. Referee Hoges ensured a fair and equitable contest allowing free-flowing rugby with minimum disruptions.
After the obligatory glass of port, the game started at a cracking pace in stifling heat with the forwards led by “Slabbs” taking the ball up the middle closely supported by Mike, Lord Jim, Magic, Joe, Bonk, Gunna, Flavio and Greedy “angry pills” Smith. Grant “pick me up to say hello” Morgan (aka “Morgs”) marshalled his backs with the ever-reliable centre combination of “Phantom” and “Scoll” ensuring minimal penetration by the opposition. The Funnel Webs scored a few tries out wide. “Scoll” failed to hear the call from his captain that one of the kick offs to the opposition would be going to the left side of the field. As a result, the Funnel Web backs took the ball cleanly and immediately scored, untouched, in the far corner. Apparently “Scoll” was left stranded back at half way with the other Charcoals backs gesturing to his captain about inaudible game calls!
It was great to see Gunna back on the pitch. He combined magnificently with the other elder statesman in red shorts often backing each other up in the tight play with the call “red passing to red Ref.”
As the afternoon progressed the heat appeared to affect the pace and composure of the Funnel Web players .... or was it the fact that Morgs was now playing in the forwards!. The Charcoals seemed to find their second wind in the last stanza of ten minutes and miraculously scored a few tries with Slabbs “running” the full half of the field to ground the ball.
After Hoges blew the whistle for full time, hot and exhausted players adjourned to the liquor stall for a well-deserved drink. Slabbs Rodgers, our Club Captain conducted the after-game awards.
The Whingeing Pom Award – Mike Rivell
Best Charcoals Player – Marty “Slabbs” Rodgers – presented by Funnel Webs Captain Leon d’Apice (the stewards have been summoned!)
Best Funnel Webs Player – “Crazy” – presented by Charcoals stand-in Club Captain Marty “Slabbs” Rodgers.
Thanks to Dome and Tiny for their big effort on the food and drinks stall and Tiny for taking photos of the game for inclusion on our website. Thanks heaps to those Funnel Web and Oakhill players who turned up on the day to support the Charcoals.
See you at our next scheduled game on Sunday, 5th May, 2013 for the Hawkesbury Historicals Gala Day at Deerubbin Park, Windsor.
Yours in rugby,
Vice President & A/Secretary
23rd April, 2013.
ST. PATRICK’S NIGHT GAME, 15 MARCH, 2013
EASTWOOD CHARCOALS VERSUS OAKHILL “WITHERED” OAKS
T. G. MILLNER RUGBY FIELD
“I used to go missing quite a lot ........................... Miss Canada, Miss United Kingdom, Miss World”
(George Best, Irish Soccer International)
On a balmy March evening, the magnificently-prepared pitch at T G Millner greeted the Charcoals on the occasion of their traditional St. Patrick’s game against Marc’s “Withered” Oaks. The groundsman is to be complimented for his efforts on what must be the best rugby ground in NSW.
As Eastwood Rugby Club Manager Patrick Callachor herded the kids off the main pitch and the overhead floodlights slowly illuminated the park, the Charcoals assembled for the pre match pep talk from Club Captain, Pom Begg. The traditional glass of port was shared with our Oakhill opponents before kickoff. It would be a baptism of fire for our new players, Randall and Mike, an opportunity for other Charcoals players to rid their person of cobwebs and shoehorn those bunioned and gnarled feet into spanking new boots. Joe had already proven himself admirably at Port Macquarie. There was one player however, in a Charcoals jumper unrecognisable to the writer, who unfortunately had what must be described as the roughest head on the pitch. It resembled a peeled Desiree potato with numerous divots and snags. OMG!!....it’s Magic!! All for a good cause. Onya mate.
“Lord Jim” Dunn resplendent in the Irish green jumper and 10 metres of tape around those knobbly knees, elected to referee the game as he and good wife Margaret were departing early the following day on a cruise to the Land of the Long White Shroud. The team captains agreed on a 3 x 20 minute playing format for the evening.
The first 20 minute stanza was really a settling-in period for the Charcoals. Players needed to establish their “groove” and our new players, find the positions in which they felt most comfortable. Despite some promising cohesion in the Charcoals game plan, the Oakhill boys snuck in 2 quick tries.
The second scoreless stanza was a completely different proposition. After an interval rev-up by Pom (port in hand) and a tear-jerking plea for greater commitment from Morgs, the game seemed to advance to a much higher level. It was marked by big hit-ups and bone-jarring tackles from the forwards which seemed to unsettle the Oakhill boys. Tiny, Magic, Marty, Skoll, Dome, Pom and Greedy (the Mardi Gras Parade episode finally erased from his memory) belted the opposition and slowly but methodically, ground away at their defences. However, the attacking and defensive game skills demonstrated by our new player Mike, were a revelation and will be a real asset to the team. Meanwhile, the backs who were marshalled into action by Morgs, the small hairy man’s representative, showed extreme promise. Their defence was rock solid and their attack marked by quick hands to the outside backs particularly by Wazza, Thunder, Phantom, Mike and Joe, despite blinding interference from the floodlights! The backline forays into enemy territory were finished off wonderfully by Randall and Numbers out on the wing.
A couple of players like Thunder and Mike alternated between forwards and backs. For the first time in a long while, the Charcoals had more backs than forwards on the pitch. Makeup please!
The third stanza was reduced to 10 minutes which reflected the intensity and ball-tearing commitment from the players, particularly the forwards. Again all players stood up to the plate and accounted for themselves magnificently. Oakhill almost scored another try but Lord Jim had already blown the final whistle after Wazza was caught isolated on the floor without any support.
The only injuries sustained were a few knocks, bruises, scratches (Pom – “Watch the nails boys!”) and “Numbers” with a crook knee. All for a good cause. Just as well it’s 4 weeks ‘til the next game!.
The after-game formalities began by President, “Lord Jim” Dunn thanking Steve Burke in Marc’s absence, and the Oakhill lads for their continuing support of the St. Patrick’s opener at T G Millner. Club Captain Pom Begg presented the reincarnated Whingeing Pom Award to Marty and the “Dunny” Award was presented to an unsuspecting Pom by Lord Jim.
Lord Jim then caught everyone off guard by presenting Morgs with a Gordon Stags jumper (aka “I look better in a Gay Gordon jumper because it matches my green eyes rather than the blue of the Charcoals jumper” Award). I understand this is a consequence of Morgs electing to play for the Gay Gordons against the Charcoals a couple of seasons ago when they were short. Shame!
Pom then presented the Best Player Award to a thoroughly-deserving Oakhill player Nick.
There was much commotion and gnashing of teeth from the Begg camp towards the end of formalities when our Pom revealed to those present that the prestigious “Dunny” Award had gone missing from Mrs. Begg’s Louis Vitton bag. A case of the pot calling the kettle black don’t you think! Last year’s recipient, Tiny Harrison was observed sniggering in his schooner. Justice!
Thank you to the Charcoalettes, the Oakhill “Withered” Oaks players and supporters, Lord Jim for refereeing the game and particularly Patrick Callachor for his valued support
What a wonderful start to the season and one which the Committee can be rightfully proud of. It was good to have a solid hit-up like that for our first game.
See you at the next game. Check it out on our website www.eastwoodcharcoals.com
Yours in rugby,
Rabbs (2 b’s)
Vice President, A/Secretary & Humble Scribe
18 March, 2013