It was a matchless afternoon (in every sense of the word) at the Rectory Field on Saturday. A pre-match buffet had been organised before Askeans had been set to play Swanley in a friendly game.
However, there was a bit of a wind and drizzle in the London area and for some peculiar reason the match was postponed.
No idea what the matter is with everyone today – all this PC nonsense – why would a few fallen trees, destroyed properties, floods and overturned cars stop us playing on such a perfect pitch (which our singing is not!). Okay, so it would have been a tad more suitable for water polo, but I ask you (That is rhetorical by the way).
Undeterred by this trifling problem, a big crowd nevertheless pitched up (ha ha) for the buffet and a few beers – that’s Askeans and Friends for you!
Prominent amongst the Askeans old faces (some very old) were Alan Hunt (Chunky), Alan Eastick, Chris Peters, Bill and Ennis Ruston, Rob Noble, Paul Walsh, and Steve Homewood.
In addition, there was a very decent bunch from Blackheath, including our referee liaison officer Glen Filer (the older blokes called him “Sir” all afternoon - old habits die hard as Bruce Willis never said-still, he seemed to like it.)
There was an excellent contingent also from Shooters Hill - Chairman Phil Mason, an Askeans player in his younger days (watch out for ‘The Story’ later on)- Danny Brooker, Neil Sharp, Richard Fitzgerald, Bill White, Shooters Hill Coach, David ‘Eddie’ Cochrane - There was much agreement that the joint training sessions planned between Shooters Hill and Askeans are going to be a boost for both clubs.
Above all, however, the afternoon was for the players, and they created a wonderful good hearted and especially family atmosphere – AJ’s wife, Claire was there, and Dave O’Connor, Paul Clarke and Ollie Kemmis brought along their children. There was a good gathering of players –
Jack Henderson, Nic Patten, Joe Field, Danny Walkden, Chris Jeffrey, AJ, Ollie Kemmis, Frank Turner, Shane Watson, Eddie Strickland, James Roddy, Devon Maynard, and Luke Eneas.
At around 4.30pm Chairman Steve Homewood had the considerable honour of presenting a group of our current players with a commemorative tie and certificate in recognition of their continued loyalty to the club.
Players’ Roll of Honour* * 150+ Appearances Andrew Jeffrey Danny Walkden
Chris Jeffrey Charlie King Dave O’Connor Frank Turner
Joe Field Charlie Grist Jack Henderson Ollie Kemmis
Nick Linklater Ciaran O’Flynn
Dave Tate Shane Walton
**Criteria: No. of appearances for the 1st XV since 2010 and have put their boots on this season
The ties were well received, especially by Ollie’s son, who decided that as his Dad now has a ‘50’ tie, he needs to play more games to get a ‘100’ tie!
As the afternoon turned into evening, players played pool and Rob Noble took on all-comers at ‘Killer’ (at least his version!) on the dart board.
And so, to 'The Story,’ from Rob Noble, who else!
In 1986, Rob was working in Hong Kong and met up with Askeans on their Far East Tour. Askeans played in the Final of the Hong Kong inaugural Rugby 10s.We were all over the local expat team, but a partisan local ref ensured a local victory – Rob reminded Phil of the story, who remembered it well –
‘Yes,’ said Phil, ‘It was 3 tries disallowed. I was playing at No.10 and scored 2 of them. We lost by 3 points!’ Phil then called over his Shooters Hill pals to confirm he had not been telling porkie pies all these years!
As Ian Lunn, our Director of Rugby said so saliently, ‘You don’t need a match to have a good Pre- Match Buffet!
Saturday 12th March - Lordswood vs Askeans (Away)
Friday 18th March – Floodlit Game at the Rectory Field!
Askeans vs Shooters Hill
Saturday 19th March – 6 Nations Day at the Rectory Field
– Come and watch on the big screens
Buffet the Match Slayer programme is attached, featuring –
Players’ Roll of Honour
Calendar of Events 20221
Nick Linklater Player Profile
Askean Heritage Shirts for order!
Many Thanks to Chris Peters for his £100 Patron Fee (Even though we had lost his standing order!)
And welcome to Richard Fitzgerald and Bill White, who joined as Askeans non playing members on Saturday!