Friday, December 30, 2011

Gentlemen or Hooligan?

The oft repeated quote that football (soccer) is a gentleman's game played by hooligans and that rugby is a hooligan's game played by gentlemen and is the source of the title of my blog about the Grimsby Gentlemen Rugby Football Club is surprisingly not that old (or at least not that old compared to me).  Sean Fegan in his blog actually found that the earliest reference he could find was a quote from the Chancellor of Cambridge in "The Times" of London of January 30, 1953 in an article called "The Evolution of Football" which states:

           "... a large family-Association, Rugby Union, Rugby League, Gaelic football, American football and Australian Rules.  Each clearly has its merits and may safely be left to its adherents, but one cannot refrain from repeating the story of a certain Chancellor of Cambridge University (confessing complete ignorance of all football), who was asked to sum up a debate on Association and Rugby.  "It is clear,"he said," that one is a gentlemen's game played by hooligans; the other a hooligan's game played by gentlemen."

Note the Chancellor did not determine which code was the gentlemen and which code was the hooligans but left it up to history and myself to decide; so I did.

Fegan's blog is a fascinating look at the history of rugby, check it out.


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Hooligns: Police spoil all our fun.

100 people were detained in Russia after police mistook rugby match as brawl

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Authorities in southern Russia detained over 100 people when police mistook a game 
of rugby as a brawl.  Police apparently received a tip that a large crowd had gathered
at an empty sports ground on the outskirts of the city on Sunday afternoon.  Around
70 policemen arrived at the scene to find a large number of cars parked around the 
area, and what appeared to be a crowd that was watching two rival gangs fight each
The police stopped the event and around 100 people were detained until they learned
that they were actually playing a game of rugby.  Everyone was released within a few
hours, but authorities were displeased that they had not informed them of the sporting
event earlier.  A spokesperson for the police said,"Given the difficult, troubled situation
in the region, at a time when counter-terrorism actions are being actively conducted,
citizens are obligated to inform [authorities] either verbally or in writing of their
"The fact that police took us to be hooligans, this isn't the first time," said one of the

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Letter to the Guy Above the Bar

Dear Guy

Hasn't it been just great weather this fall?  Here it is almost Christmas and we have not had any snow or ice  and the temperature has been a lot warmer than one would think. Still you would not expect to look out your window and see a guy dressed only in girl's underwear and a shocking pink boa (you probably get to see more of this in the warmer months).  The couple of men with this guy definitely should not have been ringing the doorbell or knocking and yelling. We should not have been doing this and have no problem with you calling the police (I guess if there no bank heists or serious crimes then they have to be somewhere).  You might have waited until the next day to call your landlord to complain.

It was not planned to go outside during the awards dinner but several events came together like a perfect storm with this result.  One significant happening was your hammering on the floor of your room while were were eating our dinner in the pub below.  I understand that perhaps about 8:30 on a Saturday night you might want to sit back and drink a quiet beer while watching the hockey game (aren't the Leafs doing well this year, but don't count on them to make the playoffs) and that you would be upset by the noise from below. But the thing we were wondering was, do you realize that you live over a bar?  Now I don't know how busy George is but at times I know the bar is going to get noisy (I have been there when some loud bands were playing).

Perhaps you expected that it would be looked on as a joke, but you have to be very careful to pull that off and you have to pick your crowd.  This group certainly had no sense of humour.  For example I told this great joke, well here it is and you decide, I will shorten it a bit.

This guy goes to a urologist to get his prostate checked and the doctor turns out to be youngish, cute and female.  So she puts him on his left side and tells him to say "ninety-nine" as she explores.  He says "ninety-nine".  However, she says she cannot feel it properly and puts him on his right side and tells him again to say "ninety-nine".  He complies.  She still cannot feel it properly so she puts him on his back so she can check again but she says she will have to hold his penis out of the way.  She again tells him to say "ninety-nine".  He says "one, two..".

Now isn't that hilarious but surprisingly it did not go well, so don't expect a group like that to laugh at some knocks on the ceiling.   (Maybe they do not know what a urologist is.)

One of the other things that happened was one player was given women's panties and a pink boa as a joke award, so of course he had to put them on and he was the one you saw out side.  Here's where the weather comes in, if it had been snowing or very cold he would not have gone out, as it was he did not stay our long and you could tell it sure was cool when he came in.  He gets the same gift and he does the same thing every year so we are kind of used to it but it probably is a surprise to the casual viewer like these big cops (you invited).

Another thing that would have taken up some time (after dinner and the awards we basically wait around until it is time to go to the Legion to cheer up the veterans, it was nice the police also came) was table surfing an event started last year and should have taken up a lot of time.  I blame myself for not having coached the proper skills of table surfing and the first participant landed to the side table, pulling out all the screws so the whole top came off  and he slid (quite hard)  into the edge of the next table with his chest (he could have been hurt).  In the interests of safety, I shut the activity down and the crowd's energy could only be released by them (three) going outside yelling and ringing door bells.

The next day (late the next day) everything does not seem so funny and could have led to more serious things like (as was suggested by your landlord) that you might come down with a gun or a knife (you wouldn't actually do that - would you?) and then where would we be.  Perhaps may I suggest you invest in a very thick rug or perhaps you could work Friday and Saturday evenings or even you could could join us next year.  We  are always looking for players and we practice at Alway school starting in April.  Just come up for a run around but tell us who you are (just say ninety-nine).

Yours Sincerely (I do go on and on)
Bill Stuart
Grimsby Gentlemen RFC

Friday, December 16, 2011

Ode to a Tighthead Prop

Ode to a Tighthead Prop
Author unknown

It was midway through the season
we were just outside the four
and although I know we won it
I can't recall the score.

But there's one thing I remember
and to me it says a lot
about the men who front the scrum -
the men we call "the props".

We won a lineout near half way
the backs went on a run
the flankers quickly ripped the ball
and second phase was won.

Another back then crashed it up
and drove towards the line
another maul was duly set
to attack it one more time.

The forwards pushed and rolled that maul
They got tough set the ball up to a tee
the last man in played tight head prop
and wore the number "3"

The ball was pushed in to his hands
he held it like a beer
then simply dropped to score the try -
his first in 15 years.

Then later, once the game was done
he sat amidst his team
he led the song and called himself
the try scoring machine.

But it wasn't till the night wore on
that the truth was finally told
just two beers in, he'd scored the try
and also kicked the goal.

At 6 o'clock the try was scored
by barging through their pack
he carried two men as he scored
while stepping 'round a back.

By seven he'd run twenty yards
out sprinting their quick men
then beat the last line of defence
with a "Jonah Lomu" fend.

By eight he'd run from near half way
and thrown a cut out pass
then looped around and run again
no-one was in his class.

By nine he'd run from end to end
his teammates stood in awe
he chipped and caught it on the full
then swan dived as he scored.

By ten he'd drunk a dozen beers
but still his eyes did glisten
as he told the story of "that try"
to anyone who'd listen.

His chest filled up, as he spoke,
his voice was filled with pride
he felt for sure he would be named
the captain of that side.

By night’s end he was by himself
still talking on his own
the club was shut, the lights were out
his mates had all gone home.

And that's why I love my front row -
they simply never stop
and why I always lend an ear
when a try's scored by a prop

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Club Dinner 2011

Another typical awards dinner with dinner, awards, a man dressed in women's underwear., noise, punches, violence, table breaking , cops and visiting the Legion. At least the meal was different this time. It was  was Greek themed and excellently prepared and served  by Bob's cousin John and helped by Billy. We highly recommend them as caterers. The club would also like to thank George of Nathan's Depot Pub for letting us have our dinner there for the third year in a row.  We did not mean to cause you any problems George and will not likely be back next year.

Bob, John and Billy

The awards went well starting with the most improved player in Nick Howe.  Nick came to most practices and became a stronger prop as the year went on. Nick was unable to attend the dinner as he . 


This year we had 8 new players to senior rugby and all made a significant contribution.  Our oldest rookie was Wally at 48 years of age.  However,  a player who made a significant difference to the club by attending most practices, bought his own weighted ball, drove to Bruce all by himself and joined the executive was Brendan Sculland and he is the rookie of the year.

Mr. President and Brendan
Comeback player of the year went to James Vienneau who brought his son to flag rugby and said even though I haven't played in twenty years I can do this. And he did.

Two older guys trying to keep their eyes open
The Clubman of the year this year went to two individuals and one not even a man.  Laura and Martin grew the flag program from a dozen a couple of years ago to three dozen this year and had a very successful season in getting young kids involved..

Mr. President, Laura and Martin Van Den Hurk
Our junior player of the year was a 17 year old player in Grade 11 at Beamsville this year and came to the club to score four tries in the league at center.  Martin was not able to attend the dinner.

Martin Colyn
This year`s player of the year was Vic Blaney who got most of the man of the match awards, scored five tries (we only scored 19 in total) and played out of position to help the club.  The award was presented by Club Manager Kyle Wilson.

Kyle and Vic

This year`s Deer`s Rear award went to Alex Millar who in a fall game at home against Bruce, managed to confuse the opposition by picking up the ball in goal running it out to the one and placing it down whereupon Bruce picked it up, took it back into the goal and touched it down.  Alex's defense is that he was injured with a collapsed lung and slightly mixed up.

Mr. President with Alex
Also I forgot to announce at the dinner that we have two members on the Niagara All-Star B division team and they are Vic Blaney and Derrick Weber.

A few more pictures with no comments:

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Fall League Week One: Hamilton at Home

Grimsby/St Catharines 14: Hamilton 17

Venue: Alway Field

Referee: Nick Carbone **

Weather: A lovely day for rugby.

Attendance:  A couple of hundred as there were many competing attractions on.  I guess most of the fans were on the other side of the field.

Presidents Report: Hamilton could have had a very strong side out as they won the NRU "A" division while we are at the bottom of the "B" but they had a mixture of players from their first and seconds and some old boys.  Our club which is now a combination of Grimsby and St. Catharines' players, both of which did not do real well in the "B" division, managed to make a game of it.  We did not have a lot of time to prepare as both teams had a number of players who showed up 5 minutes before kickoff or after (I mean Grimsby and St Catharines - Hamilton was ready and organized).  I showed in the first half during which Hamilton scored two tries and converted one.  To be fair Hamilton did have the wind advantage.  In the second half we score early as  Kevin Haner  smartly? hung off a 5 meter ruck and took a pop  to go over.  A longish conversion was made by Derrick Weber.  Then about twenty five minutes in Vic Blaney burst over the line to score and Derricks conversion put Lincoln (Gim/St Cath) ahead by two.  With five minutes to go an errant kick was blocked and the Hamilton winger picked up and scored to make it a disappointing loss (for us) and a disappointing win for Hamilton who thought they should have done much better.

A classic eight pick up by Kyle, supported by Dean and Martin

Team: 1. Jon Millington, 2. Brendan Sculland, 3. Kevin Haner, 4. Jeremy Young, 5. Bob Mavro, 6. Martin Van Der Hurk, 7. Dean  Crosier, 8. Kyle Wilson, 9. Jeff Innis (only wanted a few minutes), 10. Derrick Weber, 11. Setphan Johnson, 12. Vic Blaney, 13. Jason Hanes, 14. Alex Millar, 15. A. Nother

Ryan Coens went on for Milli, Wally Cone went on for Bob, Kyle McLean went on for Martin, Dirk Riechow went on for Jeremy and Mike Cuthbertson went on for Alex Millar in the second half.
Captain's Report : It was a rough game with a lot of pushing a shoving and some dirty play which  needs to be sorted out.  Only two yellow cards were handed out but more should have been done.  St. Catharines has made a club suspension for their player player involved. It would have been nice to have some organization at the start and be able to get everyone on the same page at practice.  Hopefully that will come. Congratulations to Mike Cuthbertson and Dirk Reichow (below) who played in their first ever rugby game.

I didn't get many action shots as the battery was low. 

Man of the match:  I don't know I wasn't paying attention, actually I was serving beer. Perhaps some of the many followers can remind me.

Lessons learned:  I think we all agree that the team regulation that was emphasized at the end of the match by Kevin that anyone over two hundred and fourty pounds should not be kicking the ball will be in effect from now on.  And anyone must get a fucking kicking licence from the coach.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Grimsby Grubbers Annual BBQ Aug 15 2011

This year Martin and Laura again sponsored and organized the annual BBQ and parents- kids game.  And despite the threat of rain at the start had 75 people (kids and parents) to the event.

Some were more interested in the parachute

Some were more interested in grasshoppers (Grimsby Grasshoppers would be a great rugby team name)
And some were interested in rugby. 

Or Brian, the mad scientist

Thanks to everyone

Burlington III Away: Week Ten

Grimsby Gentlemen 19: Burlington Centaurs 41

(picture taken at the end of the game when everyone was there)

Venue:  Sherwood Forest Park

Referee:  Not sure - did not catch the name

Weather:  Very nice day - 26 degrees, probably a little hot for playing - slight wind

Attendance: Hoards of supporters were prevented from attending due to parking issues but Adam and Ben, Marie, Wally and his son, Nick managed to get there on time (even though players did not).

President's Report:  Due to all sorts of things we were short at kickoff and managed to get a couple of NOB players (Niagara Old Boys) who had just played to help out.  We still only had 13 and despite a lot of effort we were down 12 to 0 by the time we got two players on.  We were down 15 to 0 by the time we got all our players on the field and sorted out into the selected positions. Not a good start, but we had a good ending to the first half. with 10 minutes to go Andy sent a probing kick into their corner, good coverage by Chris and Vic allowed us to get the ball back and send Martin C into the corner of the end zone.  Chris made an amazing conversion in which the ball flew all over the place before splitting the uprights. A few minutes later, we put together a string of passes including Nathan, Vic, Kyle  and a few others to send Chris to score his first try under the posts, which he also converted.

Half time score:  Grimsby Gentlemen 14: Burlington Centaurs 15

Unfortunately that was a close as we would get.  Burlington who had bulked up for the game had the advantage in the scrums and managed to get a lot more ball which allowed them to score often.  They picked on our mistakes and came up with points.  Near the end Vic made one of his runs and could not be brought down until he hit the try line.

Final Score:  Grimsby Gentlemen 19: Burlington Centaurs 41

Team:  1. Nathan Rowbottom (eventually), 2. Brendan Sculland, 3. Jon Millington, 4. Jeremy Young, 5. Bob Mavro, 6. Philip Sullivan (40 min - first game this year), 7. Kyle Wilson, 8. Vic Blaney 9. Nick Limeaux (had to run from the Go station), 10. Derrick Spencer, 11. Trevor Trotman (eventually), 12. Martin Colyn, 13. Andy Breuls, 14. Chris Short (eventually), 15. Alex Millar.  16. Martin Van Den Herk (40 min)
and two NOBs.(thank you) Pabelo is soon moving to Grimsby.


Martin Colyn 1 T  (makes 4 tries this year)
Vic Blaney 1T (Third game in a row)
Chris Short 1 T, 2 C (27 points in his last three games - remember the team only scored 3 points in its first three games)

Martin's Try

Chris's Try

Vic's Try

Coaches' Report:  We had an outside chance to move up the table into a playoff position but Burlington had other ideas and put some weight and some quickness into their team.  It did not help that were were down players for 20 minutes at the start.  The score jumped up near the end as they got some bounces, were less tired and more into the game.  Anyway at the start we played hard with the usual great games from Webs and Vic.  We had some good support for a while.  Alex who attended his first whole practice this week had a good game fielding the ball and counter attacking.  Coaches man of the match went to Chris Short for scoring his first try and hitting two conversions.  There was no pick of man of the match by the other team as we left fairly early and I don't think they did it for the other games.

This is the crew who put up the fence in Grimsby ( missing Philip Sullivan)

We even got a mention in The West Niagara News by  D.I.A. Manager, Leigh Jamkiv, who stated "Special thanks to the Grimsby Gentlemen's (sic: I have always wanted to do that) Rugby Club for their help in the setup and cleanup of the park for this event."  We put it up in a record 1 hour and took it down in 15 minutes. 

A traditional Greek - Dutch welcome or a demonstration of a Greek wrestling move only they are not naked.

An important group at the Canada game. 

Another important pair at the game. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A History of My Rugby: The Early Years

There was a lot of interest in my shoulder resurfacing surgery, mainly by players wondering how long it would be before they will have to have it done. The short answer is I came late to rugby compared to present day players and imports and only started playing in the fall of 1967 at university. Trent University gets to claim me as an alumni only because they accepted me in 1965 after a not so stellar high school career.

One of the reasons my marks were not great is that in those days you had to write departmental exams in each course in Grade 13 for something like 75% of your final mark. Also to get into a university you needed two credits in English (Authors and Composition) and two credits in French (Authors and Composition). AND you needed two credits in mathematics to go to most universities. And if there was one subject I was poorer in than French it was Math, so in grade 13 deciding on Grade 13 courses, I heard the word most when in fact there was only one, namely Trent University in Peterborough. It got even a bit more complicated but basically that is how Trent won me over and eventually introduced me to rugby.

Trent was only in its second year of existence and was smaller than most high schools with an enrollment of about 350. I played football at high school and a couple of partial years of junior with the Hurricanes and Braves. So of course at Trent I had to play on the niversity soccer team who played the local Bible College and Normal (Teacher's) College. We might play some colleges from other universities.

Then in the summer of 1967, Paul Wilson came to Trent as athletic director and he was an English rugby player. Paul started the rugby team at Trent that year, I joined and played two years with Trent as a prop. However, this was not to be a story about me: this was to be a story about what the laws of rugby were back in 1967 when I started. The idea came from Scot Harland who sends out an information page from the North American Caribbean Rugby Association each week with worse pictures than mine. He has been asking specific questions about the laws in various years. These questions if you wish to try them are about the laws as I learned them (or didn't) in 1967. Answers will appear in a near future blog (as soon as I make them up): hey if you want real history; read a book.

1. The object of the game then was to win as it is now. Correct?

2. In 1967, a try was worth 3 points; a goal from a free kick or penalty kick was 3 points and a dropped goal was 3 points. So how much was a goal from a try?

3. The ball, at commencement of play, should be inflated to which of the following?

a) 9 1/2 - 10 lb per square inch
b) 0.6697 - 9.7031 kilograms per square centimeter
c) 65.71 - 66.75 kilopascals

4. What could the referee not do before a match?

5. According to the present laws, a knock on occurs when a player loses possession of the ball and it goes forward or when a player hits the ball forward or when the ball hits a hand or arm and goes forward and the ball touches the ground or another player before the original player can catch it. How was this different in 1967?

6. A referee would move a scrummage only in which circumstances?

7. Who got the scrummage if a forward moving maul was stopped?

8. What was the scrum engage sequence in 1967?

9. A player putting in the ball had to put the ball straight along the middle line of the scrum in a single forward movement so that it first touches the ground immediately beyond the nearer first player. How was this different in 1967?

10. How far did the laws allow a scrum to wheel in 1967?

11. How long did the loose forwards have to stay bound to a scrum at this time?

12. In 1967, what determined the maximum length of the lineout?

13. If a team was awarded a penalty kick on the 50 yard line and a player kicked the ball directly into touch at the other teams 20 yard line, what would happen?

14. If a player in general play at the 50 yard line kicked the ball directly into touch at the other teams 20 yard line, what would happen?

15. Back then a place kick would be used to start the match and on the resumption of play after half time (we use a drop kick now).  A place kick would also be used for penalties and when else?

16. What were kicking tees made of in 1967?

17. It is not a law, but who threw the ball into a lineout at this time?          

Friday, August 5, 2011

New Club Crest

Lately there has been a lot of support in modifying the club crest to include things that are happening right now. We would just like to add two supports to both sides of the escutcheon that is the present shield. We simply need the OK of 75% of the members and Paul Rohner's willingness to add to his tattoo. The new coat of arms would look something like this.

The fly swatters could of course be orientated upwards.

Gentlemen and Aliens: A Friendly

Grimsby Gentlemen 30: Hamilton Hornets II 19

Venue: Alway Field

Thanks to Philip who painted the numbers on the lines for those players who get lost on the field but it must have tired him out as he did not play.

Referee: Paul Whaling*** an "international" referee from Rochester. Paul did a very good job; he knew what he wanted and was decisive about it. He might not come back again because of the following picture. There is something defective about this camera and I need a more expensive one.

Weather: A nice sunny evening (7:00 start) mid twenties.

Attendance: A nice evening and relatively well attended although there are a lot of other distractions this time of year. Martin Wolfe was not there and for the first time this year we won without him. Perhaps it was because of Frank Shulte (courageously coming to the game on his 10th wedding anniversary) who encouraged the boys but did not get on the field. Injured players Nick, Dean and Wally came out to support the side along with Elizabeth and some friends.

Thanks to Frank who did the BBQ and Dean who worked the bar.

And below is [insert name here] showing her Dad, Alex Millar, how you are supposed to run with the ball.

Team: 1. Nathan Rowbottom, 2. Brandan Sculland, 3. Jon Millington, 4. S.T. Cath, 5 Bob Mavro, 6. Martin Van Den Hurk, 7. Alex Millar (60), 8. Vic Blaney, 9. Derrick Weber, 10. Andy Breuls (60), 11. Trevor Trotman(40), 12. James Vinneau (40), 13. Martin Colyn, 14. Chris Short, 15. Nick Limeaux and thanks to three players pulled up from the farm club who played in the second half.

President's Report : Overall it was a good game played in good spirit which does not always happen between Hamilton and Grimsby. We have not played them for a couple of years and they obliged by coming to us. They had some fairly large players and we did not play the same level of aggressive defense we had last Tuesday against Niagara. The scoring was back and forth in the first half. Hamilton scored first after about 15 minutes of 10 man rugby. At about 20 min we caught a lineout in their end (not a sure thing this year) and drove the lineout until Nathan grounded the ball. Chris converted. Shortly afterward, Derrick picked up a ball from a ruck and found a gap (I missed it as I was chasing a ball in the bush). Again though we sat back and let the heavy runners from Hamilton do their work and they scored twice, converting one. Five minutes to the end of the half, Chris hit a penalty goal and we reduced the lead to four.

This is Nathan's try off a drive from a lineout.

Half time score: Grimsby 15: Hamilton 19.

In the second half, Hamilton introduced some younger subs and we got away with some runs in the center. Vic took a crash ball through the centers at our fourty and out ran everyone to score. Chris Hladrick ? later crashed center to score . One of these was converted. Hamilton seemed to less offence in the second half and at 80 minutes, Chris got a chance to hit a 40 meter penalty goal, which he slotted.

This is Vic's run through the centers in the first picture to score in the second. The rest of our team was sensibly conserving energy for the restart.

Final Score: Grimsby Gentlemen 30: Hamilton Hornets II 19

Nathan Rowbottom 1 T (second game in a row) ; Derrick Weber 1 T; Vic Blaney 1 T (second game in a row); Chris Hadrick? 1 T
Chris Short 2 C, 2 P

Coaches' Report: Well done Gentlemen. I suspect they thought it was going to be easier. Pictured is a dejected Hamilton side line. We did well on the scrums again and better in the lineouts. Some good kicking often got us out of trouble in the first half. Hamilton seemed to play a lot of 10 man rugby running with the ball into a ruck at every opportunity. We were slow covering the rucks, ball watching, not communicating and not attacking (taking away time and space). We put together better runs in the second half but I think Hamilton was weaker.

Coaches Man of the Match: A lot of honourable mentions, Webs, Vic and Chris. Chris's record in two games of kicking is 18 points (6/8 conversion goals and 2/3 penalty goals - he has both made and missed a 40 m penalty). The man of the match (consensus on the sideline) went to Nathan Rowbottom for his scrum work, and play around the field (hard tackles).

Hamilton's Man of the Match: Derrick Weber

Some Hamilton players felt we should be higher in our table than we are but I think the A1 teams are not as good as the B.

There is some question if I am a life member in Hamilton since I am on their web site as being one but no one has ever actually officially told me. Tom Edwards, Hamilton president, said he thought that if it was on the website then it must be true but he also thought I had played for Canada. So who knows.

Bored of the Flies

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Niagara III (?) at home: Week Nine

Grimsby Gentlemen 28: Niagara Wasps III 21

Venue: Alway School: the field was good considering the heat and lack of rainfall for the last month.

Referee: Nick Carbone ** He did alright but took a lot of flack from Niagara supporters, his own club. We need to get used to his not release call but the fact we were right there taking the ball away meant that they were not and the player was isolated. It does show that there are not a lot of refs in the area.

Weather: The weather at 6:45 on Tuesday evening was much nicer than 1:30 on Saturday (mid twenties instead of mid thirties, thanks Scotty. However, the sun was lower in the sky and shadows were longer. It took a bit of time to get used to.

Attendance: Not capacity but a good turnout for a Tuesday. Eddie, Bill , Steve, and below is life member Paul who had not seen any other games this year (kids) and Martin our fixture secretary who has been at every game we won this year and only one that we did not. Martin also did the cooking and set up for the meal afterward. He also closed the bar. Great job Martin.
Eddy paid his social dues this night and became our only paid up social member this year.

Team: 1 Jon Millington, 2 Brendan Sculand, 3 Nick Howe, 4 Jeremy Young, 5 Dean Gibson, 6 Martin Van Den Hurk, 7 Vic Blaney, 8 Kyle Wilson, 9 Nick Lemieux, 10 Derick Weber, 11 Chris Short, 12 Levi Rowbottom (guest player) (40 min) , 13 Martin Colyn, 14 Trevor Trotman, 15 Alex Millar, 16 Nathan Rowbottom, (60 min) 17 James Vinneau (40 min)
(plus assorted guest players)
Dean Gibson (20 min injured) - Nathan Rowbottom
Nick Howe (30 min injured) - guest player Jason Haynes

Casualty Ward
I should be in the causality ward as I now have gout in my big toe as well as a resurfaced humerus.
Presidents Report: Expecting Niagara to bolster their team, we arranged for a little more strength than usual. Thank you to those extra players. It was an exciting game, played hard with lots of straight ahead running. A nice game to win but their team was a lot different than the team we played and beat handily the last time. As happened last time, they controlled things for the first twenty minutes and we had to defend mightily (or whatever). At about twenty minutes a bit of confusion from a lineout on our five led to a pass being delivered to the wrong person who tried to run it out of the endzone and was stripped of the ball. But quickly we came back and after a saving dive by Nick we scored (I missed it), I think by Nathan Rowbottom. * (need reference) A few minutes later, Martin V picked up a ball at a ruck about 20 meters out, made a quick dash the ruck, avoiding all contact, and scored under the posts. Then after a lot of grity rugby by the gentlemen to get the ball into Niagara territory, Vic charged under the posts for our third try. Near the end of the half however, we relaxed and Niagara came back with their own crashing try.

Half time score: Grimsby Gentlemen 21: Niagara Wasps 14

At the start of the second, Niagara came out running hard with their big boys and a new and shifty #10. They won the territory battle and we had to defend mightily (again) to keep them out of our try zone. Webs made several good kicks to get us out of trouble. The other team said from the side line that kicking was all he could do. Then at about 20 min Webs did the other thing he is good at and took a quick ball to the blind side of a ruck, found a seam and headed for their fullback. Freezing the fullback he fed to our fullback (a guest player but we will give it to Nick who usually plays fullback) who scored. Niagara came on and with about 7 minutes to go managed a final try.

Final Score: Grimsby Gentlemen 28: Niagara Wasps 21

A final note was the extraordinary kicking of Chris Short. Chris, playing in only his third game of rugby ever and first as a kicker, kicked all four conversions and missed on a fourty meter penalty by only a bit wide left.


Nathan Rowbottom? 1 T
Martin Van Den Hurk 1 T
Vic Blaney 1 T
Nick Lemieux (although the other guy got his ass burned) 1 T
Chris Short 4 C (8 points)

The following is me trying to photoshop a rugby ball for Martin's head just after he scored and Chris is coming in to kick the conversion.

The following is Vic scoring his try through a slew of Niagara players and our players cheering him on (barely in picture) but not supporting well.
Coaches Report: It was a nice bonus point win which could have gone the other way if we had not held fairly firm on defense. It was nice to see a team poorer at lineouts than us. Due to a couple of brain cramps, I played a couple of guest players before our players and I do apologize (thanks to Dylan to point it out). At times we had some continuity in moving the ball but we still need work in that area . Scrums were again excellent and a problem for the other team. The referee seemed to be calling the not release law different than the other refs and we had trouble with it an got penalized several times. Speaking to him afterward, he seemed to know what he wanted and we will have to play to the referee (a lot of refs are calling or not calling it differently). Thanks to all for being respectful and not like the visitors who were on his case almost every call. They must not have read the missive from HQ this week.

Although we will not make the playoff, but we still have a bit more rugby to play, starting with a friendly game against Hamilton on Thursday August 4 and a return game in Hamilton August 27. Thanks to your captain, Derrick, who raised $110 for the social committee with his keg party at his house after St. Catharines.

Note: Think of some witty and/or unexpected statement that summaries the whole blog.