Golden Gallopers at Waitangi Day 2015
It’s the first weekend in February and that means it’s Waitangi Day for the Redlands Mudcrabs Veterans rugby club. The GPS Golden Gallopers made their annual pilgrimage east and what a terrific turnout it was this year. We had 12 players up from our usual 5 or 6 as Dads are often still caught up with kids sports and lawn mowing duties. Actually they usually just think it is too hot for rugby and in fairness that is often the case. Well done to the 12 that showed, and hopefully it is a sign that we have strong attendances to games in the year ahead.
This years festival seemed to be a better turnout in general with 8 full teams across about 10 clubs. There were all sorts of random jerseys wandering around, and certainly old favourites XXXX, Wynnum Bugs, Easts, Redlands, Pine Rivers, Sunnybank, and Redcliffe were all represented. Thankfully the heat stayed away a little this year and it was a cool 31 as we trundled on to the field having had our usual warm-up of bending down to tie our boot laces.
Your author took a few head knocks on the day so the specifics are sketchy, however it went something like this….
The Gallopers first game was against a new team, the Anzacs who were a Kiwi family team apparently. They were slick, obviously played together for years and looked terrific in yellow suit jacket style jerseys. We had to drag in some random Mudcrabs to make up numbers and I will say that upset our balance because we were rolled and rolled well. The Anzacs were too slick and we played like it was the first time we have touched a footy in 6 months, which it was. They tackled low and hard, apart from the bloke that collared Gibbo early in the game bringing an end to his day. Apparently they had a try line down their end but we didn’t get close to it and even if we would have, the unmown grass would have obscured our vision.
Game 2, against the Wynnum Bugs we started to find our feet a little. That club has been through tough times of late but apparently are in better shape this year. It doesn’t look like they will be in a merger with Goodna as we have seen recently. There were some good breaks made by Nigel and Lochie in the middle and we rolled in some terrific tries. Not even the spit roast visibly on fire was enough to put us off our game. Thankfully the meat survived because the rolls really were terrific.
Our final game was against the Pine Rivers Pensioners. They seemed like a good bunch of lads with a well-supported club. They initially came out in a casual manner and we rolled over them with a couple of quick tries. They decided they didn’t want to be smashed and came back at us well, making it 2-2 at half time. The game fired up a bit in the 2nd half and it became a tough contest that we won in a fairly tight encounter, 4-2 (I think?).
It really was a terrific Waitangi Day for the Gallopers club. The day had many highlights; the hat trick of tries by The Gimp in game 2, Tony Vial zippy try down the left wing, the return of club past greats- Chewy, Nigel, Dolby and the terrific front on bone jarring defence of Chewy and Nigel (less so Dolbs), and the newby of the day who has told me he will be back Aaron who ran the ball well from prop, and of course the cold beers with mates afterwards. Great also to see returning faces Eugene, Lochie, Wrighty, Alby, Morgo, Gibbo all eager to be on the field regularly in 2015.
As per previous emails, the game schedule for the season is 99% completed and you will all get a copy of this soon, and will be on the website as always. It looks like being a terrific mix of games this year with home games, road trips and a couple of games aligned with the seniors. So, get registered and come and be a part of it lads, and when the schedule is done, send a link or the copy you receive out to all your mates. It would be perfect to have a solid team of 20 to every game this season.