Pro-Life Kelburne Mens 5s Lose Out to Greenock 2s

WDL Division 3 : Pro-Life Kelburne Mens 5s 0–2 Greenock 2s - 20.4.17

Venue - Glasgow Green

Kelburne 5`s played their final game of the season against Greenock Morton Men`s 2`s, who also happened to be the team that they played in their first match at the beginning of the season and ended with a 3-1 loss to Greenock after Kelburne had initially been 0-1 up at half time.

Match Report / Season Round-up:

The Kelburne 5`s team consisted of 5 senior players - Willie Hunt, Hamish Walker, Ryan Wood, Dick Donaldson and Club President Mark Fulton. The rest of the team with the exception of our talented young Goalkeeper Matthew Retson was made up of junior players ranging in ages from 11 years to 13 years old. At the start of the game the Greenock side started the match at a very high tempo which they maintained throughout the entire match and the quality of their play was at a much higher level than had been present in the first encounter between the 2 teams at the start of the season. The pace and skill level exhibited by the Greenock side surpassed most if not all the teams that Kelburne had played in the division throughout the course of the season so far. To Kelburne`s credit they managed to keep the score line to 0-0 in the first half, through sheer determination although they struggled at times to maintain possession and apply any pressure to Greenock inside their half. Several half chances were created though, through tireless running by club president Mark Fulton who managed to find space and pick up some long through balls which forced the Greenock goalkeeper to come off his line to block the attempts on goal. Dick Donaldson worked very hard in midfield to win possession but lacked support from the younger Kelburne midfield players who were `out muscled` by their Greenock counterparts. The Kelburne 5th team have made a habit this season of being level or in front of the opposition at half time but have then gone on to concede goals late on in the second half. History repeated itself as with less than 10 minutes to go the Greenock attack fired a lifted ball into the D which made it past the Kelburne defence into the centre of the D allowing a scramble for the ball which a Greenock player managed to score from. This was harsh on Kelburne but the reality was that Kelburne had started to tire under the constant pressure from the fit and physical Greenock side and the second goal followed not long after. Kelburne continued to try and get a goal back through Mark Fulton and Dick Donaldson who tried again and again to make scoring opportunities for the Kelburne Juniors but to no avail and the game finished 0-2 to Greenock.

Particular mention goes to Hamish Walker playing at centre back and a man who will freely admit to being of `advancing years` who had a fine game against a very fit, fast and physical Greenock side, running himself into the ground in the second half. Throughout the match Hamish used his experience to read the game excellently, making a number of important tackles and interceptions to break up the attacking play from Greenock and also to try and set up the Kelburne play going forwards. This season has been a very challenging one for the Men`s 5th team which in itself is a misnomer as the majority of the pool of players for the 5th team has been a group of boys varying in age from 11 up to 14 almost all of whom have been playing in their first full season of `adult hockey`. The Kelburne 5th team have easily won the prize in division 3 for having the youngest players forming the squad on a weekly basis. Several of the opposition teams in division 3 play with no juniors in their squad and the other teams which do have some juniors in their squad are generally several years older than the Kelburne juniors. The experience gained by the juniors who played for the 5th team this season will hopefully stand them in good stead for next season. There are several young talented players from the jockey section who hopefully will be coming along to the 5th team training after the summer and they will provide some healthy competition for places in the squad for next season. This may provide a few problems for the selection team picking the players for the various squads to ensure that all the young players get a regular run out but this can only be a good problem to have going forwards for the future of the club. I cannot fault the youngsters for their commitment this season in terms of turning up every week to training, on time and full of enthusiasm. Above all it needs to be fun and enjoyable to play and take part and hopefully we have managed to create an atmosphere where this is the case. A fine example of the commitment of the youngsters is junior
Goal keeper Fionn Wilson who has turned up as a reserve, almost every week on match day fully kitted and ready to go for the warm up and to support the 5`s from the side lines. Fionn made his debut as goal keeper for the men`s 5`s team in a friendly match just prior to the start of the second half of the season. Several people need a mention of thanks for their input over the course of the season and their names are as follows. Top of the list is Ian McIntyre, 5`s team captain who puts a huge amount of his own free time into making sure that we have a full squad of players turning up to every match and making sure that all the fixtures and games are running as scheduled. This can be a difficult job on occasion as the other men`s teams in the club will regularly shuffle players about due to other players being unavailable. All the parents involved in bringing the boys to the various training sessions and matches and who stand out in all weathers to support the 5`s deserve a big pat on the back, their continued support makes a huge difference to the running of the team. Big thanks to Gary Stewart who should be re-titled team manager, and who has helped out almost every week on match day with the substitutions to ensure that all the youngsters making up the full 16 squad of players get an opportunity to have pitch time. Thank you also to the regular supply of umpires that Kelburne have available, who also give up their free time to turn up each week to umpire the 5`s games, and without which it should be remembered we would not be able to play. Lastly a big thank you to all the coaches involved at all levels in the club but in particular the coaches involved with the junior players who are helping to ensure that the future of the club is bright.