chickenfeet: (rugby)
One of the kids I coached in 2007, Zoltan Kevsehi, has just made the Hungarian U18 side. OK, Hungary are ranked 64th in the world (between the Cayman Islands and Colombia) but it's still the first time someone I've coached had made a national side.
chickenfeet: (penalty)
I'm starting to think about next rugby season. I am going to be refereeing. That means job one is to be match fit by the start of May. I'm thinking that if I keep running four to five times/week, do a bit of skiing and maybe do some 'staircase' workouts, maybe twice per week, I should be in good shape to start getting in shape around the middle of March. I'll need to ensure that my weight stays below 215, preferably 210#. I'll also do indoor training with the Nomads once that starts.

Some time in March I'll hit the serious training schedule. As well as regular running. I'll work in fartleks and sprint drills. I want to get my 2.4km time below 11 minutes by the time fitness testing comes around. I'd also like to be inside 6s for 40m. (Yeah, I know, neither of these is very fast but I'm no spring chicken).

Philosophically, I think I'm going to be a less lenient referee. Reflecting on the games I reffed last year, watching higher level games and talking to other refs I have come to the conclusion that not much in the tackle zone happens by accident. Players on the wrong side of the ball can get out of there 95% plus of the time if they want to. Players can stay on there feet unless contact is involved. I think I'm going to go with close to zero tolerance in the tackle area.

I'm not sure what will happen with the coaching. I guess I'll do it if I can though I'm not sure it will be at all easy to fit in with work. Wed'll see I guess.
chickenfeet: (rugby)
Michael Harvey supplied me with another great set of photos of the boys. This time they are from the semi-final and consolation final on the 28th September at Fletcher's.

Here are some samples:

RGB_0051, originally uploaded by

RGB_0054, originally uploaded by

RGB_0144, originally uploaded by

And here is the full set.
chickenfeet: (rugby)
One of the parents took a bunch of photos with a much better camera than ours. Here are three samples. There are 51 pictures in the Flickr set.

AUG_0181, originally uploaded by

AUG_0217, originally uploaded by

AUG_0188, originally uploaded by

chickenfeet: (penalty)
It was all about the rugby really. Saturday morning I was with the U16s at Fletcher's. We beat Mississauga 15-5 and are now 5 and 0. We were down a try at the half but the boys were clearly inspired by my ability to deliver a half time talk which (narrowly) avoided use of the seven words one is not allowed to use when the kids' parents are around.

At noon I refereed the Nomads vs Saracens women's second team game. It was hot. Ferociously hot. I survived but it was physically very tough indeed. The game was followed by drinkies with an interesting pair of lesbian soccer players.

Sunday, it rained. It rained a lot and when it stopped raining God decided he was Swedish and turned the sauna setting up to 11. It was also the annual Nomads Strawberries and Champagne garden party. This is a semi formal event featuring boobs booze, burgers, strawberries and stuff. Here are a few pictures (many more on Flickr).

s&c8, originally uploaded by

Bear and Lemur

s&c21, originally uploaded by

BoobsLadies in sundresses

s&c14, originally uploaded by

Interesting interpretation of semi-formal
chickenfeet: (mohan)
... I can't come to practice next week because I'm flying to London to see my granddad knighted by the queen...

for [ profile] sabotabby... and this is the kid who goes to Hogwarts
chickenfeet: (rugby)
We had over 60 boys and girls turn out for a coaching clinic with our new head coach today. A very respectable number of senior players also turned out to help.

I have to say that Drew is a brilliant coach; twice Ontario coach of the year and now Community Development officer for the ORU. I learned a lot, even about very basic things. Best thing of all, sixty kids had a fun work out on a beautiful sunny Sunday.

Here's three pictures. More on Flickr.

clinic6, originally uploaded by

clinic13, originally uploaded by

clinic27, originally uploaded by

chickenfeet: (mew)
Friday night and Saturday early was spent watching Pan's Labyrinth. I liked it a lot. It is beautiful and cruel and the minor plot/continuity problems are less annoying in a film with so much of a fantasy element than they might otherwise be. It's also very refreshing to see a big budget film use special effects with a degree of restraint. Anyone really disturbed by violence might have a bit of a hard time with it though.

Saturday evening was Aubrey and Lara's barbecue/pot luck. Fun people, lots of booze and rather good food. Alex's coconut shrimp and Alan's marinated beef rib were really good. No complaints about my Thai grilled chicken either. Thank heavens for good public transit. I do like to be able to get around the city without driving.

Sunday morning we checked out the new T&T store on Cherry Street. It's big, bright and clean and has a fantastic selection of Asian oriented groceries and prepared food products. The non Asian selection is a bit limited so it won't cut out the need to go to Loblaw's for soda and the like but it's definitely more convenient than going to Chinatown.

Sunday afternoon was the Nomads junior BBQ held on the fringes of darkest Scarberia. Walking through the neighbourhood was a bit weird. It was really quiet and felt like a setting for Zombie Apocalypse. It was a bit ill attended but there was the usual silliness that attends Nomads events including the Kiwis seeing who could dive furthest across a soaped up tarp. I also learnt more about fake ID then I've ever needed to know but I guess if you are sixteen it's kind of handy.
chickenfeet: (rugby)
Today the Nomads had a full slate of men's games against long time rivals the Toronto Scottish. This is a rivalry going back fifty years and there's even a cup for the winner of the most recent first team game. Despite the Scottish rather desperate efforts to strengthen their squad, including, it is said, advertising in Scottish newspapers (though why anybody would expect to find decent rugby players there anymore is beyond me), the form book suggested this should be a fairly easy run out for the Nomads.

By and large it was. The fact that we could dress something like 65 players for the three games while they looked to be struggling to find 40 suggested they had problems. On a hot afternoon, having to have guys playing two full games against teams that could use the maximum permitted number of substitutes was obviously going to be a problem. And so it proved.

In the third team game, by the end the Nomads were basically just catching the kick off and running it back for a score. It was 90+- to 10 when the ref blew it up early. The second team game wasn't a whole lot different. I think it finished up 83-0 but by that time had run out of fingers and toes. The first team game was, mercifully, more of a contest, especially as it was being televised. In fact, I was a bit worried when the Nomads were only 3-0 up at the half. I think there must have been a few well chosen words from the coach at the half because the boys looked a lot more focussed in the second half. They started to put some phases together and play in a way that made the most of our much faster backs. In the end it was a fairly comfortable 36-0 win with enough tries to secure a much needed bonus point.

So, Nomads are 5-0 going into the July break with just bonus points keeping us behind the Yeothugs but we haven't played them yet. It's definitely going to take rather more precision to get past them than I saw today.

September 2017

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