Even before joining SRD I was aware that after a Bout there is always an After Party… Little did I realise that the SRD Men’s team also like to challenge themselves and do it the other way around! And so, as we arrived at Sewell Park College to play a friendly game against the East Anglo Smacksons, there were a few sore heads to be found among my teammates along with one no-show, who had been left on the sofa at home with a handy bucket next to him.
This was only my second game on skates and my first as part of an SRD men’s team, having joined last September. I had been reliably informed that playing the Smacksons is a “Rite of Passage” for all SRD men’s team skaters, and this was my first opportunity to play with a team made up of the people I train with every week. In addition to a couple of other Rookies from SRD’s recent Show Me What You Block double header, the teams were certainly not rookies. It was (choosing a polite expression) terrifying, to skate out in a non rookie game!
Having evened out the sides with the loan of three of our players, it was time to start. Greggles was playing in his Cherry Popper – and though we talked about nerves on the journey up – they didn’t show as we formed our first wall under the guiding hand of Reckless.
I honestly don’t remember much about the game as it all happened so quickly so have been aided by Asterisk’s video and stunning commentary [too kind!! *prez]. The action on track was fast and furious with many short jams throughout the game and the score see-sawing even quicker. *Lead change* chorused by the cheer squad at regular intervals.
There were some fantastic passages of play by both teams including a 25 point jam by reluctant Jammer Indi-Hannah Jones and points piled up by the rest of our main Jammer rotation of Sunday Sanchez and Tomfoolery. Overall, the level of jamming by SRD Jammers was excellent – Floorless and Demotivator deserve huge credit in the final points tally, the final score could have been very different had we not loaned them to the Smacksons.
Both teams blocked ferociously, dishing out and receiving some great hits. Fast play with strong walls and recycling jammers, I surprised myself with the number of hits I took and was still able to remain on my feet. Fantastic communication from Reckless, Tubesock Shakur, Great Scott and Indi-Hannah Jones (when not jamming) really made the drills and exercises completed at training come to life. There were some interesting and creative plays from Bad Grandad – with whom, by the end of the bout I had alternately kept the seats in the penalty box warm and it was a far cry from my first meeting with Martin when he was teaching dancers to roller skate.
Sunday Sanchez made an excellent Captain, leading the team flawlessly both on and off the track and producing some great pep talks when we needed them most. Our bench team of Suffolk Punch and Nips made a fine job of organising line-ups and working out tactics while regularly checking on me to make sure I wasn’t dying (although I wasn’t one of those with a hangover, I’m just unfit).
A big thank you to the Smacksons for hosting us and also to the Ref and NSO teams. Lastly I’d like to say how honoured I was to have been able to play with everyone on the team but I am especially grateful that I was able to play on the same team as Tubesock Shakur before he leaves.
-The Grim Rigger #37
notes from the President…
*Our boys will be in action on home turf in just 5 days’ time! Come and witness their toughest challenge yet, British Men’s Champs tier 2, versus Mild Discomfort, in Ipswich 7th May
*As Rigger mentions, our long standing Head Coach, Tubesock Shakur, will be moving back to the States soon (sad faces 🙁 ) – come and see him off in the greatest way possible: ROLLER DERBY. We’re hosting a one-of-a-kind event which YOU can be involved in! All info over on the Tubesock’s Funhouse event page
Later, sports fans 🙂