A positive start to the season for Ladies 3s
By Grove Menzieshill
Despite limited resources, a starting line up of only 10 players and a lack of forwards, the Ladies 3 fought back against diversity to earn a credible 5th place in the Bell Trophy tournament, which was ultimately won by last year's winners, Madras.
It was a bright hot sunny day when we arrived at Strathallan but thankfully by the time we finished our warm up session, taken by the evergreen Pat Lindsay, there were enough clouds to keep things cool.
Our first match was against big rivals Kinross, and I don't think they even realised we were fielding only 10 players. A solid performance from the team saw the 20 minute match end in a no score draw.
Match 2 was against Perth 1s and we were delighted that Kara MacRitchie had turned up, having made the effort to join us after her morning school match in Aberdeen (where she probably had an easy game in goals given the 8:0 score line I think they had!) Kara was put up front to play Forward along side Kristie Burnett, who not only played totally out of position for a defender, but also gamely umpired in between all our matches and then was also asked to umpire in the final, which went to penalty flicks. Well done and thanks Kristie!
Although we now had a full team Perth 1 had no goal keeper and played with 11 outfielders so we barely noticed our extra player. Kristie capitalised with a goal to give us a 1:0 lead but Perth 1s were awarded a Penalty Corner in the dying seconds of the match when the umpire mistook a stick for a foot in our D and tragically they scored with the last touch of the game giving us 1:1 draw.
The final group match was against Strathallan 2s, supposedly after an hour break... An hour?!!
Zoe and I went off to use the facilities and I had just bought my barely warm burger from the (not free!) BBQ when we received shouts from the pitch... We were on NOW!! A rushed and confused start with hardly any time to get kitted up, never mind a warm up, contributed to a sudden 2 nil down score line. Our team responded brilliantly and we fought back hard, with sustained pressure resulting in a goal back from Jennifer Pate. For sure we would have scored again but unfortunately we ran out of time and the 2:1 defeat resulted in us being placed bottom of our group.
In the play-offs we beat Perth 2s 1:0 with a lovely goal from Eleanor Greenwood and then we had the satisfaction of a re-match against Strathallan 2s for the 5th / 6th position. We achieved our sweet revenge with a 1:0 win courtesy of Kara's goal against them, an "outcome" which had our coach Chris Harris smiling on the inside...
When asked what we needed to work on for the next game, our coach replied, "Everything"!!!