With only 9 players, missing some of our strongest, we headed to Gloucester on Friday evening. This formed the opening evening and match to our mini-tour around the South West. Arriving in ample time allowed us to suss out the pool and collect our thoughts before diving in to the warm up.
We were unsure of what to expect, having not played Gloucester yet this year, but focussed on our play rather than theirs as any team should. It proved difficult with their coach and number of supporters, but our boys offered some encouraging cheers which is always good for confidence boosting. The first quarter set us off on a good path; securing 3 goals put us ahead of their 1 and left us feeling positive about the game to come. A couple of fouls were given against us with very fair refereeing, having reminded a couple of players what they shouldn’t be doing we ploughed on into the second quarter.
Keeping our cool, focusing on keeping possession and taking our time, we aimed to slow the game a little allowing our players to maintain their energy for any counterattacks. With a surprise goal from a back shot and a second we ended the first half in the lead, 2-5.
In the second half we all began to tire. Vicky was being double marked in pit making the goals less easy to secure from there but this is when Abi Mudge came into her element. Securing 2 goals, one from pit, she was the only goal scorer in this quarter and I would like to congratulate her on some great work!
The final quarter, and we were knackered. Having swam hard, and not had the subbing potential we normally do, we struggled to secure many more goals. The final goal of the game came with a poorly defended man up allowing Rhiannon to pass the ball for a tap in from Vicky in pit. A great opportune piece of teamwork we couldn’t have trained for!
A great start to the polo-intense weekend, and on that note we headed to Exeter where Abi’s parents kindly put us up for the night!
Vicky Gall – 4
Abi Mudge – 2
Sam Cross – 1
Rhiannon Smith – 1
Jasmin Birkett – 2
Sofia Hardiker – 2