Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Learning Experiences at Hatch

This is the Craig holding the Hatch Cup. It was closer than anyone else in the family got to holding silverware during the tournament. It was a fantastic event to be part of and had a real sense of occasion about it.

This was my team gathering for the opening ceremony. Unfortunately the unpredictable Wellington weather meant the opening was moved indoors, which sadly led to the cancelling of the pipe band and the parade.

All the teams brought banners and it was quite striking seeing 24 teams in their differently coloured tracksuits.

After the opening speeches and pleasantries there is a ribbon swap. Each player has 24 ribbons and tries to exchange each one with a player from a different team so that they have a complete set of ribbons. It is great fun but total carnage. Jamie had all his organised in little packets with the names of other teams on stickers.

My team as the lowest ranked team had a pretty tough draw. We played the teams that eventually finished 1st, 3rd and 9th in the tournament and finished 5th of 6 in our group with one win. We were not disgraced in any of our games and played some good hockey. We also had fun at the beach and up Mt Victoria and in the pool.

In our quarter final we played Northland. We had all the pressure but kept missing the goals and their goalkeeper made some good saves. The match finished 1-1 and so went to penalty strokes. After the first set of 5 we were equal and so it went to sudden death. On the second sudden death stroke our stroke taker scored but was called for a technical infringement that no one else saw apart from the young umpire who called it. This was a pretty crushing result and tipped us into the bottom 4. We had been aiming for 17th place and this was realistic for us. The boys were pretty flat. In the afternoon we went ten pin bowling. I scored 207 which is my highest ever score. I took no pleasure in it and would have happily traded a hundred points for a goal earlier in the day! We played really well in our last game and finished 23rd.

Jamie's team did really well and recorded the two highest wins in group play. They lost a tight game to North Harbour which gave them a tougher quarter final against Waikato. They had the better of the game against an unbeaten Waikato side but they also finished 1-1 and went to penalty strokes. The Wellington goalie saved the first stroke but then Wellington missed three in a row. There were plenty tears shed. The margin between success and failure is small. They won their last two matches to finish 5th which was good but less than they had hoped for. Jamie scored a few goals and his hockey obviously developed over the course of the rep season.

We took the team to Ichiban Tepanyaki where Ailsa ate the legs of a shrimp which are quite crunchy. Luke and Craig were very supportive through the week and Luke did all the Bruins video taping of games.

We were all pretty tired at the end of the week but had learned a huge amount. It was great to be involved in different ways in the 50th Hatch Cup and for it to be in Wellington made it quite special with both home teams getting a lot of support.

In the last couple of days we have discovered that our house has been letting in water during the storms and requires some remedial surgery. We have scaffolding on the outside and exposed stud inside in 4 places. We have a good builder who has found these problems and can hopefully fix them. We are very conscious of the implications of all the global financial meltdown for the work that is supported here and that is supported from here. There are elections coming up in NZ and the US but how much governments can affect the big picture in the world is by no means certain. The latest edition of Canvas seeks to encourage students and graduates to engage in the political process.

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