Saturday, February 24, 2007

We’re Bound to Pay for This

Glenurquhart 7 Glengarry 0

This is becoming freaky. The Glen score 7 goals- some of them very well taken and the season has not started yet. The old Presbyterian sense of gloom is beginning to assert itself : it cannot really be happening. Surely there’s some mistake-the Glen don’t do victory on this scale even although Glengarry were so short that Mr Reid had to lend them his elder son to give them a forward line. Master Reid played well enough but did not get sufficient help to test the Musical Goalie who was as usual quite outstanding. Not quite so outstanding at the training four days later though when at minute 5 into the 12 minute run , he was observed to be lingering in the pack or even at the back and mumbling about doing “special goalie’s stuff”. Don’t really blame him, though as the American Marines would point out ,all the brothers suffering together breeds a sense of comradeship -which is fine except that goalies are in fact a breed apart. I suppose that’s why they get the blame -and if they get the blame , then perhaps they should be allowed to do “special goalie’s stuff”. Just a thought about this special goalie’s stuff. Having talked to a number of goalies and ,more accurately having observed them in the wild ,it would appear their favourite training is a sort of Japanese stick dance followed by some bending exercises , presumably to strengthen the back muscles for picking the ball out of the net. This is quickly followed by some shambling runs behind the goal in preparation for the retrieval of mishit balls.
The next exercise involves chucking the ball up in the air and cannoning it up field beyond the centreline , an exercise invariably to be followed by some shouting practice. Shouting is in fact one of a goalie’s most valuable skills and must be regularly practiced to develop the full range of invective. Indeed that excellent work of reference “Fitness for the Modern Shinty Goalie “ by Kenny Macdonald states categorically that shouting is the one exercise that “no serious goalie should ever neglect” And Kenny should know -because over the years he has had quite a lot to shout about.
Back at the match Calum Fraser staked a claim to be a member of the front line with a neat goal in 8 mins while Mr Reid’s second son doubled the scoring in 17 before a beautiful drive from Andrew Corrigan in 30 minutes sent the home side into their venison burgers at half-time with a clear lead. The Wing Centre was puzzled at the line up in the forward sector and also by the fact that the sub bench was packed with the Galacticos of the D. A passing 8 year old told him that the “manager was trying something out and since that was clear to a child the Wing Centre took it on board that it ought to be clear to him- and “after all said the kid what else are practice games for?”
Suitably rebuked the Wing Centre made notes in his wee book about the number of crows watching the match from the top of the fence above the astro turf. Seven in all - a prime number of some significance. So it turned out to be.
Personnel changes at halftime led to a different approach to goal and in no time -55 minutes actually- Lewis Maclennan had made the total four. A neat piece of play by Ruaridh Cameron allowed Corrigan to bag his second while Lewis Maclennan and David Smart completed the rout with well taken finishes. The latter two in particular seemed to be very accurate in their shooting and an encouraging number of shots had to be dealt with by the Garry keeper.
The score then 7-0 : the crows had spoken. The Garry men were undone by their own symbolic bird - but is this a good omen for the Glen? The raven himself is hoarse and all that….
On reflection it does not seem so- several of the front man have presented with muscle injuries and the next match has some cultural significance .The next match is of course the Macdonald Cup. The venue is Strathglass where the crow of choice is the hoodie. Me, I ‘d clap an asbo on the whole lot of them. The hope is the Glen team can do the same.

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