Jose for Hooker - Vote Now?
By Rich Fenech
Green and Gold junkies far and wide....
......it’s been a while so buckle up, top up the glass and send the kids packing…. an important update!
Behind all great Clubs inevitably you will find a hard working group of professional people commonly referred to as the Club Committee, indeed Barnes RFC boast such a committee!
We convened recently attending to high level matters requiring demanding standards in intellect and competency; below is an extract from the Meeting Minutes roughly at the mid-way point of the meeting:
Chairman: …. “So I’m pleased to see we have resolved the rat problem and there is now no need to invest in a Club Cat, as that would have given rise to another huge debate as to what we would name the dam thing, though Ken the Cat, or Bubba the Cat or even Buster the cat, all have a ring to them!”
Spence: “Err Rhino” (Hand in the air)
Chairman: “Shut up Spence!”
“Now then Finche, you are looking rather dapper and I know we all think you dye your hair, but I know you don’t, you are just uber cool; anyway tell us about the Vets?”
Finche: “Thank you Mr Chairman and indeed you too are looking perfectly tanned so I’m pleased to see tax planning has its benefits!” “If I may; I have a few notes to refer too?”
Chairman: (Beaming smile of sun kissed Olive skin) “Of course Rich please continue!”
Finche: “As ever the weather plays a hugely important part of sporting life and the freak event of the Thames recently flooding in London and breaking its banks exclusively at Putney was a most unwelcome event! Sadly the local tsunami which followed at exactly 09.35 on Friday 8th February only flooded the rugby pitches and put them at least a meter under water, so obviously totally unplayable. Ironically the neighbouring ‘Wet Land’ Centre, a stretch of land lacerated with water inlets, was not flooded at all...amazing that!
With the Kazakhstani SAS of Council teams on standby Barn Elms and Borat knew the best course of action was to cancel all Saturday fixtures without any further reference to the forecast and as a result utterly sabotage my blinking Friday afternoon.....arrrgghhhhhh!!!!
Chairman: (shaking his head in despair looking at Ken) “This is not good Finche….”
Finche: “Worst still Mr Chairman when I came to the Club on the Saturday to collect our kit I took it upon myself to inspect the (Flooded) pitches which were bathed in warm sunlight and pleasantly dry! Anyway Mr Chairman, you will be pleased to know the fixture was re located to Esher much to the unselfish efforts of Gus, (sat next to me on my left, delving into his 12th slice of Pizza!) and of course Christy and I am genuinely hugely grateful to them.
“As it happens Farnham turned up to Esher in good numbers and were certainly up for a fiercely contested game, but we very quickly got on top of them and avoided getting sucked into a rolling maul arm wrestle.”
“Vice Captain Richie Mayson stunned us all very early on, not with his snake hip twists and turns or his brilliant tackling, but just that he turned up so early, (12:22) whilst I was in the middle of deliberating over devouring a yellow or orange Jelly Baby….”
Spence: (Arm vigorously shoots up) “Errr...Chai….”
Chairman: “Shut the F*@!k up Spence….!!!!”
Finche: “…..anyway I choose the orange one and entered into quiet a complex conversation with Richie about our tactics, game plan and moves. Richie who has undertaken some highly sophisticated and risky counter espionage military manoeuvres deep within enemy lines, was scribbling notes like a 14 year old boy who had unpicked the lock to his dad’s 70’s, 80’s and 90’s stash of Playboy, before his Mother walked in!”
“And that Mr Chairman is what happened at Esher. We took Farnham apart by applying a simple yet highly effective game plan executed with sheer brilliance by outstanding players.”
Chairman: (also scribbling notes like a 14 year old boy who had unpicked the lock to his dad’s 70’s, 80’s and 90’s stash of Playboy) “Who Finche?”
Finche: “Well a massive shout out to Timmy Williams who on debut put in an outstanding shift and scored. Marek was hugely physical and still amazes me how well he competes at the breakdown. Dean Pye once quoted as saying ‘Machines don’t break’, well he is probably one of the most influential players on the park and, heck, his presence is missed when not playing.
And then there are the unassuming quiet souls amongst us who have such an awesome work rate; Dean Stanford is probably my first name I can always pencil in on the team sheet and of course my fellow front rowers in Beans and Codo; real brothers in arms stuff!”
“Oh!!!....and then there are a couple of guys called Jacko and James or as Jose refers to it……
‘….with a boyish giggle of mischievous pleasure…..Lets sit back and binge on the Netflix Jack and James show!’
“We actually won 59:7 with tries going to Jose, Tim, Marek, Codo and James and then Pins and Jacko scored two each! Richie Mayson slotted 7 pens which in itself is down to the jelly babies, arriving early or being quiet a tidy player!”
“So Mr Chairman that was looking back a few weeks ago! But Vets is not all about playing Vets, so the other weekend Richie Mayson, Cris Pini (still the fastest man on the park – although there needs to be a head to head v Boko – another sublime addition to the Vets), Nick Hamilton and my good self said we would help the Occies in a key league/cup double header against London Media.”
Jonny Coles: (Occies DOR)….”Yeah cheers Finche you guys are always brilliant and we love having you guys on board – that was a great WIN for us – THANK YOU!”
…Smiles all round the committee table….Ken asleep….Spence hand in the air still…..Doonan on his phone trying to close out his deficit on his Paddy Power app….Gus… 16th slice….!!
Chairman: “Well Ficnhe that’s fantastic news….”
Finche: (politely yet firmly cutting in) “Indeed Mr Chairman, though we have only really finished the antipasto….!”
“We then were away to Quins which was to be a really key game as they had just beaten the HEAVIES 14:12 which was most disconcerting to read.
“We arrived at St Mary’s Uni in dribs and drabs and were mucked around by the Uni Staff as to which changing room we were supposed to be in, so somebody knew how to hack Skips off…. f@*!ing with my OCD, especially as I had lined up all the Jelly Babies in colour order for Richie Mayson, my dependable, reliable second in-command who will one day take the reins of Chariot Harrodian, to choose from!!!”
“We were moved into another changing room and Richie Baldrick had gone AWOL!”
“We took to the pitch with plenty of time on our hands and started to get patterns and moves under the way carefully orchestrated by James H who was showing the highly athletic Archie how our 5 man lineout was to operate. Archie is my XFit coach and has played for us before v Guildford and Richmond, whilst more accustom to a 24kg kettle bell he soon got into rhythm and went on to have a stormer of game. My special thanks to Archie, you are officially a Harrodian Vet!”
“At the other end of the age spectrum was the eloquent Simon Slattery. Slatts has featured as a backbone player over the last few seasons and brought flair entwined with poise and dependability; it was Slats last game for Harrodians and whilst he leaves the playing side of matters for good, I am sure we will see him supporting us with just as much enthusiasm; thank you Slatts!
Quins on the other hand may lack poise, though make up for it with sheer brute force and deploy it well! They are a nuggety, feisty and physical side who were very effective at the breakdown and kept us under huge pressure for the majority of the game. I can see how they turned Heavies over and the score line does no justice to how good a side Quins are.
We were tested in the scrums and Beans and new(ish) cap Mark Easterly did sterling work up front as well as carrying in the loose.
Chairman: (Licking his lips) “Finche tell me more about the scrum as I miss it badly!”
Finche: “Well Mr Chairman it’s the part of the game where eight players called forwards huddle together to create……”
Spence: (Standing up and angrily kicking his chair back) “RHINO can I talk about the 1st XV!!!”
EVERYONE: “Shut the F*@!k up Spence….!!!!”
Finche: “Joking aside Chairman; Mark is an Ox of a bloke and most certainly the guy you want on your team always; cool, quiet, solid and simply loves the ball in hand. He and Beans won’t know this but I pick out their individual kit for them and make sure they are the two players that have the right kit awaiting their arrival….OCD…..Yeah F@*!k it who cares!"
"What was also interesting is that we have a back who now wants to stop playing centre and wants to move to Hooker. It was much discussed after the match that Jose was caught loitering out of position at rucks and scrums and generally making a nuisance of himself, but he is Welsh so we have to do our bit for those disadvantaged in life!"
"There are many other players who deserve a mention and they all have my utter appreciation for being a downright brilliant bunch of guys to Skip."
"We won 22:7 with tries taken by Butch, James, Codo, Marek and also one conversion."
Chairman: “Anything else Finche?”
Finche: “Only to say huge thanks to Andy Pickering our own Club Debutant who stepped in to referee the fixture; in all my 17 years at the Club all Andy has ever said to me was “alright Rich”, but taking on this fixture he did an excellent job and was hugely vocal in officiating a cracking game - Thank you Andy.
“We remain unbeaten as do Henley who we meet on March 23rd followed by our dearest friends the Heavies on 30th; still a mountain to climb Chairman, but the summit in our sights!”
Chairman: (Grinning at Spence) “Well Rich, thank you I think that’s a perfect place to conclude this meeting!”
Oh! And the only other thank you I omitted to mention was for the Chap who cut the Oranges, very good, but can we have evenly cut segments next time please!!!