UK Lions and Neil McIntyre

Kelburne youngster Neil McIntyre represented the UK Lions on their annual tour to Belfast.
Below you will find a summary of how his weekend panned out;
Neil had a brilliant weekend playing for the UK Lions and there was some excellent hockey on show from all the sides. The Lions had split into 2 sides with Neil playing for the UK LIons which had 15 players. The other team was called the Lions UK which had 14 players. 

On the Friday night they played at Campbell College against Campbell College in a game they lost 5-1 against an older, well organised team who had been training together for some time. Although they performed well they were always up against it with 2 or 3 of the Campbell College players exceptional. They then played against North Wales in a game which, although they dominated, they lost 3-1. 

On Saturday the bus arrived at Mossley Hockey Club and the first game was against Annandale which they won 4-1. A great display in which the Lions finally started to take their chances. Next up was Leinster who also appeared older and certainly much larger than the Lions. In an entertaining game with lots of great hockey the Lions lost 3-2. Again they had the best of the play but couldn't take enough of their chances to win the game. 

Back at Mossley Hockey Club on Sunday the Lions played against Ulster. Again the Ulster side looked much bigger (and older) than the Lions. In what was the best game of the weekend the Lions lost 1-0. Again they had the best of the play but failed to convert the numerous short corners or chances they had. Neil's final match of the weekend was against North Wales. Several Of the Lions played with the North Wales side who had lost a couple of players to injury leaving the rest to form a combined Lions squad. In what was a good humoured match with lots of skill on show North Wales won 7-5. 

To complete the weekend the annual parents match was played at a much slower pace and the Irish won 1-0. A great weekend was had by all and the hockey on show was excellent. It was great to see so many kids coming together and playing 11 a side hockey and it would be great if, at some time, Kelburne was able to go and participate in something similar. What also stood out was that the kids were hitting a ball about and having fun in between their games. A big thanks to Graham Bell and Pete Atkins for putting so much time and effort into the UK Lions.