Game 1 of Australia’s inaugural 3-sided soccer competition had been played 3 weeks previously, and the players awoke this Sunday morning for Game 2, feeling the trepidation of impending competition. Calves were being stretched, boots hunted out from under beds and eyes turned upwards to confirm that the recent overnight rain had all but disappeared.
There was no tradition yet, no routine, there had only been one game and it couldn’t be trusted to be representative of the sport. Some players were injured or away, including Pythagoras’s dominant Trevor, and a handful of new players had been selected. Game 2 promised to be quite different from Game 1, and the competition’s administrators wouldn’t have it any other way.
After a short delay caused by the presences of a kids’ football clinic, fortunately cleared off by about 10.15, the teams squared off and eyeballed each other’s new look teams.
Pythagoras (the Pys) had lost Trevor (injury) and Anthony (Italy) but gained Sam (female) and Damien (male). Atletico Geometry (the Geometers) had lost Marcus (whereabouts unknown), Paula (somewhere) but had gained Denbeigh (ominously wearing a real football jersey). The All Sartres (The JPs) had lost Saddy to nursing duties (although not yet present in that capacity), and gained Cate.
This week the JPs were sporting red sashes (provided by danger striker Gavin), the Geometers had red straps hanging from their shorts and the Pys were unadorned. Two of this week’s targets were the school’s very own soccer goals, while the third target was provided by the Australian Rules posts to the east, a wider target, and one which the JPs were required to defend in the first third.
Consequently, the JPs conceded 5 goals in this term, despite the Geometers conceding the first 3. Last round’s winners, the Pys, were again looking solid, bolstered by pocket rocket Sam and a rock solid Damien.
Scores at One Third Time:
All Sartres (JPs): -5
Atletico Geometry (Geometers): -3
Pythagoras 3FC (Pys): -2
Here’s the first third played out at 125 times real speed:
The game is one of equilibrium, as the leading team experiences the feared pincer movement from the opposition. The ball bounded and rebounded, Damien was felled by a ball to the midriff, Sam lost her hat, and the token kids (Hugo and Jacob) both experienced near misses that had the adults wincing in anticipatory pain, and breathing collective sighs of relief as the ball cleared its human obstacle. There were no backward steps, plenty of forward thrusts , lots of lateral movement and dizzying hexagonal disorientation. And the Geometers had hit the front.
Scores at Two Thirds Time:
All Sartres (JPs): -9
Atletico Geometry (Geometers): -7
Pythagoras 3FC (Pys): -8
The final third promised to be a ripper. The Pys were hit hard trying to defend the ‘big goals’ and were soon trailing, the Geometers experienced a rush of attack and all of a sudden the JPs had taken the lead. The JPs’ Gavin announced that they’d “parked the bus” and indeed he, Dick and the 2 Kims fearlessly withstood a barrage of violently booted bombs and, as a result, didn’t concede a goal in the final third, and ran out winners by a solitary goal.
All Sartres (JPs): -9
Atletico Geometry (Geometers): -10
Pythagoras 3FC (Pys): -10
Thanks again to Serena for the post-match catering, and the arrival of 3 more kids (Fergus, Daniel and Leonardo) who added much needed zip to an otherwise slowing field.