Sunday, 30 October 2011

Singapore 2

Team meeting at 09:30 beside the Carlton Hotel pool .  Prof, the other keeper (Webby was already with us), flew in yesterday, so we were at full strength.  A good opportunity to talk team formations and build-up.  Trish gave us a quick chat on managing liquids etc.  I need 15 minutes on my own, as do others, to do a full set of stretching and this is now built in to the squad pre-match programme.  A quiet day doing a bit of editing and email catch-up.  Went across the road to get lunch and a mango and banana pressed fruit drink.  Strolled to the Fort Canning park, but there were a few drops of rain and got back to the hotel ahead of a deluge.  Others were not so lucky and got soaked.  Met at 16:30 changed, dry by now, for the coach organised by Kaka and Irish, en route for our 18:30 game against Scotland.  The coach has made transport easy for all of us and helps in the build-up.  At the ground, we changed and had a team talk.  Ibuprofen on the ankle, strapped my toes and then the ankle support, and then did our own stretching for a while.  We came together for Vanessa to do a Pilates set, stretching muscle groups and we were nearly ready for the off.  With a tight match programme – O40s to O60s – there is very little pitch time to knock up, but we got on, hardly noticing the pitch watering – sweating freely. 

Ken and Prof were off the pitch for this match – we can only name 16 players per game – so Webby was in goal.  I was off for the first 15, along with Bill, Andrew, Bruce and Kaka.  About 10 minutes in, Tim scored with a good follow-up and we were able to settle.  On at left wing after 15 and we made chances, Skins feeding through some good ball.  1-0 at half time and we were substituting regularly.  Came on at left midfield after 15 mins and we played out a mixed period, though did a lot of running. Took a right slip at a corner and was promptly tripped as I moved to get a shot. Scotland won a corner with 6 minutes left – a bit of pressure, but not converted.  Then up the other end, Bill got off a lovely pass to Kaka who scored well.  Result: England 2 – Scotland 0. 
Back on the bus for a very late supper at a small restaurant near Raffles – to be the team Clubhouse – beers $7, which is cheap for Singapore! Then bed, if not to sleep, and preparations for Australia tomorrow evening.

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