LX CLUB at Lille Tournament

13/14/15 March 2015

 Entries this year came from France (2 teams), Holland, Belgium, Italy, Scotland, Wales, Egypt, England (LX) and Alliance. The LX Club entered a strong squad and duly won the tournament for the fourth year in succession.

The LX squad was:

Goal: Cliff Peck

Defenders: Richard Slator (Captain), Brian Stokes, Sudesh Nayar, Geoff Furneaux

Midfield: Rob Oakley, Sarosh Talati, Nick Kennerley, Graham Jackson

Forwards: John Housham, Imtiaz Sheikh, Max Jason, Chris Thornhill

Pool Matches: All games were of 25 minutes duration. 

Alliance (won 3-0): A comfortable win after a slow start. Scorers Slator (2), Kennerley

France B (won 5-0): Outplayed a rather week French side. Scorers Max (2), Slator (2), Thornhill

Zestigplussers (won 3-0): Scorers Jackson, Max, Housham

Scotland (won 1-0): Stronger opposition, but never threatened Cliff Peck in goal. Scorer: Excellent open-play goal from Max.

Semi-Final against France A (won 1-0): More competitive game decided by another well-worked goal from Max.

Final against Wales (won 2-0): Dominated by LX, playing the best hockey of the weekend. Good open-play goals from Nick Kennerley.

The team again stayed at the Holiday Inn Express in Lille City Centre (those who experienced the building works last year will be interested in knowing that the hotel was back in excellent order). We were joined by eight of our ladies, who were able to sample the sights and museums in the locality, and also to provide some vocal support at the hockey. The group sampled French cuisine in a number of local restaurants, including the Brasserie La Paix, where we have traditionally had dinner in a private dining room.

The most hazardous part of the whole tour was the journey from the hotel to the pitch each morning. Our veritable chairman led half of his team around the same roundabout four times on one journey also passing through the same set of traffic lights on three occasions. But at least we were safe, unlike the following morning when in an attempt to find a more direct route our central defender lead us the wrong way up a one way street that I am pleased to report, after strong persuasion from his passengers, our chauffer from Doncaster declined to enter!

Rob Oakley was last seen in Lille wearing a placard in The Place de la Republique trying to sell the monkey that had taken up residence on his shoulder. He was ashamed to report that he failed to register at all on the score sheet despite seven good goal scoring opportunities over the weekend - but at least now back home he can drown his sorrows: