Recent Articles

WA Women's Masters Teams for 2024 Announced

Thank you to all the players who have nominated for this year’s WA master’s teams to compete in the Nationals in Sydney in June/July 2024. Also, a big thank you for all the selectors and OFT for your commitment and efforts getting the teams selected. We appreciate everything you do for Masters.

Unfortunately, we didn’t manage to get sufficient nominations for a WA O45s or O65s teams. However, we have worked closely together with the coaches and selection panels to select as many O45s and O65s players into other WA teams.

For those players who missed out on selections, if you are still interested to compete in this year’s Nationals, we are happy to place you on the WA Pick Up list, for you to be selected in other State teams. If keen, please email me ( and Gail Anderson ( ).

Congratulations to the following players selected in our WA Women’s Masters Teams:


Jacinta Amundsen

Maxine Christie

Harriet Collins

Adrienne Devine

Dee Garstone

Nicole Geary

Amy Harken (GK)

Shona Haynes

Emily Hegney

Melissa Luff

Tiffani Makharti

Jodie Mellor

Jenine Piper

Rebecca Saville

Fleur Trewick (O'Neil)

Sune van der Linde

Train on- Clare van den Berg (GK)



Prue Blaine

Anna Cook

Dale Cronje

Stacey Hamilton

Terri Herbert

Charlotte Hogarth (GK)

Lucy Morris

Johanna Muntz

Jodi Nield

Hayley Patton

Bronwyn Poustie

Rachel Sherborne

Tanya Storer

Elizabeth Stratton

Leisha Tatham

Tahryn Trevenen



Tanya Butler

Lyndsay Daw (GK)

Sinead French-Bluhm

Lisa Hando

Nicole Ilich

Dirranie Kirby (GK)

Bernie Landels

Rebecca McGinn

Karen Richards

Kellie Sadler

Anita Scott

Marianne Tanna

Donna Treloar

Katy Vipond

Sarah Wiese

Natasha Woodhouse

Sarah Zappelli



Sally Barrett

Suzanne Bowyer

Samantha Cameron

Megan Caporn

Glenys Chinnery (GK)

Michele Clement

Julie DeSilva

Robyn Himbeck

Lisa Hodge

Vicki McAllister

Ellie Munt

Kelli Reilly

Jean-Marie Rudd

Anna Taylor

Julie Waddell

Claire Wright

 Emergency: Tammy Cowan



Judy Bailiff

Marjorie Boultbee

Karen Bussell

Pippa Button

Kim Chandler

Anita Duckworth

Gaye Edwards

Marie Fulbert-Hadet (GK)

Helen Guinness

Ingrid Matthews

Alison McVee

Kelley Robinson

Helen    Rule

Suzanne Stoate

Clark Susan

Pearl Watene

Emergency: Judy Hawrylak



Karen Allan

Gail Anderson

Janice Arcus

Betty Bryant

Judy Collier

Alma Davies

Raelene Dunn

Susan Gallinagh (GK)

Carol Haynes

Kerry Hood

Maris Margetts

Janese McDougall

Margaret McIlwraith

Glenda Rigby

Jill Sheehan

Ricky Whelan

Train on: Delys Palmer


Good luck to all the WA Teams in Sydney this year!!




WA Men’s Masters Teams for 2024 Announced

Thank you to all the players who have nominated for this year’s WA master’s teams to compete in the Nationals in Hobart in July 2024. Also, a big thank you for all the selectors and OFT for your commitment and efforts getting the teams selected. We appreciate everything you do for Masters.

Unfortunately, we didn’t manage to get sufficient nominations for WA O34s, O40s, O45s, O55s, O65s or O80s teams. However, we have worked closely together with the coaches and selection panels to select as many of these players into other WA teams.

Congratulations to the following players and OFT selected in our WA Men’s Masters Teams:

Men's HA Masters Championships - Change of Dates

Hockey Australia Masters has confirmed changes to the dates of the Men's National Championships in Hobart in July 2024.

2024 Hockey Australia Men’s Masters Championships dates and venue have been reviewed and confirmed dates for Hobart, Tasmania in July will be as follows: 

Venue:  Tasmanian Hockey Centre, Hobart

Dates:   Friday 12 July until Saturday 27 July 2024 

Competitions will be conducted in two Tournaments to ensure shorter commitment dates for the 34-50 Men.

  • Tournament 2 34+ to 50+ Men:  Friday 12 July – Saturday 20 July 2024
  • Tournament 3 55+ to 65+ Men:  Tuesday 16 July* – Saturday 27 July 2024  (*There will be a staggered start to Tournament 3.  Teams will commence between 16 and 19 July).

                                  70/75+**   Men:   Sunday 14 July – Saturday 27 July 2024   **MA Men’s Masters Delegates have advised that no 80+ Men’s competition will go ahead in 2024.

 The HA Women’s Masters Championships, Tournament 1, remains Friday 28 June – Saturday 6 July 2024 in Sydney, NSW.

Men's Player Nominations for 2025 Trans Tasman Reopened

A decision has been made to reopen men’s player nominations for Australian teams for the 2025 Trans Tasman event to be held in the Eastern States of Australia in April/May 2025 due to an apparent issue with communication. 

The nominations are open now and will close at 11pm AEST on Thursday 27 June.  This will absolutely be the final opportunity for any Men’s players to nominate.  Note that Women’s nominations remain closed, except for any additional nominations for players called in late (after 3 June) to teams.  Please inform your Men’s players as soon as possible as renewal of revsport membership with HAMC as per below is a requirement prior to nominating.

In 2024 there is a variation to the Selection Policy for the 2025 Trans Tasman event.  A squad of players in each age group will be selected in accordance with the HAMC Selection Policy current at the date of the 2024 Hockey Australia Masters Championships. 2024 World Cup players who have nominated for 2025 Trans Tasman Selection will also be included in the squad.  Final team selections will be made from the named squad in late November/early December after World Cup events are complete.

The Player Nomination form is to be completed by athletes who are competing in one of the selection events i.e. 2024 Masters Championships or 2024 World Cup. 

A fee of $66 (incl. GST) is to be paid at the time of nomination and is non refundable. All athletes must be eligible to represent Australia at the Trans Tasman Event in 2025 as per ‘Player Eligibility’ in the HAMC Selection Policy.  


If any difficulties are experienced, please email Brad Galgon –  (I will not be available after Monday 5pm).

After renewing membership, the nomination form can be completed.  All nominating players will receive a receipt for their nomination and will have to pay the fee of $66 plus processing fee.

Event Brief – 2025 Trans Tasman Masters Challenge.pdf

Thank you in advance for your help in sharing this information throughout your hockey networks.  This information will also be shared on our facebook, Instagram and webpage noticeboard as soon as possible.

We appreciate your continued support of Hockey Australia Masters.

Kind regards



WA Women's OFT 2024 Announced

Congratulations to the following OFT selected for the WA Women's Masters Teams to compete in the Masters Nationals in Sydney 2024:


Coach WO34                    Allison Rieck

Manager WO34                Tania Dickson

Medical WO34                  Patrick Renner

Coach WO40                    Tammy Cowan

Manager WO40                Cheryl Poustie

Coach WO45                    Temeka Curley

Manager WO45                Dee Middlemiss

Coach WO50                   Charlene Miller

Manager WO50                Lyn Piper

Coach WO55                    Elisabeth Parrick

Manager WO55                Pat Scott

Coach WO60                    Jo Sgro

Manager WO60                Cherryl Pages-Oliver

Coach WO65                    TBC

Manager WO65                Donna Treloar

Coach WO70                    Coleen Dayman

Manager WO70                Colleen Bentley

We are very close in securing selected OFT for the 2 vacant positions (O55s and O65s coach) but if you or someone you know is interested, please complete the nomination form available on the website and send to asap as we would like to finalize positions this or next week.


WA Over 60's - 2007 Match Reports


WA vs NSW - Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Team “Three-Scorers” headed off to the Hockey Stadium with much anticipation lying ahead – fifteen players congregating for the first time since Selection, but only fourteen hockey bags – Phil “The Phantom” Thunder, claiming that his bag had been ghosted away on the recent airflight to some far corner of the globe and was frantically borrowing socks, turning a number 4 shirt into number 14 with black tape, and about to buy new boots, shin pads and the like at the Just Hockey shop, suddenly finds at the eleventh hour that his hockey bag has turned up in one of the other W.A. team coaches at the ground. (This was quietly noted by the fines master !!!). 

The game v. NSW is scheduled for 12.30pm and Captain Blyth is taking no chances with the traffic, has the boys assembled at 9.30 a.m. and we are at the ground by quarter-to-ten. With the Gold Coast temperature climbing to 28degC. and humidity at 95%, Len was clearly throwing down the challenge to his players to learn to manage their fluid balance as we sit for the next 2 hours in the heat watching the preceding games, fluid pouring out of our pores, and pouring fluid back in. With tactical talk done and the warm-up and stretches complete, we hit the ground running.  

There’s momentary panic in the dug-out when Graham “The Ferret” Challenor finds his stick is missing from his bag – first game tension, he’s already removed it ready for play but has had a senior moment – well, were Over 60’s after all. The pre-match Three-Scorers Haka /song had the opposition guessing … too.  

As to the Hockey game, we dominated for much of the opening half, the mid-field four with Bill “Flasher” Price in particular exerting a strong influence on the play. Flasher’s free-hit 5 metres out of the circle found the stick of Simon “Lunger” Williams, who executed a fine deflection into the back of the net only for the goal to be disallowed as one player was deemed to be within 5 metres of the hitter. Alan “the Sting” Stewart was closely marked all day, and was bowled over with a crude tackle that looked like a “card” offence – not so said the umpire, who later green-carded Lunger for a trivial contact. 

So it’s 0 – 0 at the half-time break following which the momentum swung to NSW who imperceptively took control of the play. Was it the changes off the bench ? Was it the heat and humidity that got to the brain? Rumour has it that Ferret may have been affected – so keen was he to get back on the ground with his 2nd half rotation that he was busy calling his fellow-player to come off and frantically waving the card with the appropriate number, all ready to run on, only for one thing – deja-vu …he had left his stick back in the dug-out !!! A soft goal saw NSW go one up, with a second goal a short time later.  

Peter “Pedro” Hearne saved a certain goal on the line but infringed, with the ensuing flick hitting the right-hand post. But the 2-goal deficit was looking too much to pull back and when Simon “Thommo” Thomson was hip and shouldered to the ground in a defensive position and ignominiously had a short-corner blown against him, it was clearly not to be our day. We voted Col Chivers (who collected green and yellow cards on the way) as Best for NSW, and they in turn presented an award to Goalie Colin Benporath for “saving” the flick, and their “bastard” award went to Thommo for being the most annoying opponent. Fairest and Best for W.A. as voted by our team went to Simon Thomson.

Result: WA 0 - NSW 2

WA vs WA Country - Wednesday, October 3, 2007

The insomniacs were up at first light down at the beach rubbing salt water into their wounds after yesterday’s game. The night-owls were sleeping in after metabolising the late-night bottle of Shiraz, with a leisurely 10 a.m. breakfast at one of the local beachside cafes admiring the form of passing bikini-clad beachgoers. It’s already warm and humid in the Queensland sunshine and the temperature’s going up !!! Today we have to travel north to the State Hockey Stadium in Brisbane. Team Manager, Brian “Pidgin” Soares, has covered all eventualities by installing a GPS in the team bus only to find that navigator Roger “the Rock” Jewel, astute enough to spot the local roadworks, and despite a short detour off the Freeway, has outsmarted GPS and conjured up the winning route to the Brisbane ground. Team Trainer “Lunger” cops more flak for yet again finding onehunga infested grass on which to lie down for the pre-match stretches.  

Then we’re off and running at the WA Country defence putting them under some early pressure which pays off with a penalty corner, coolly buried inside the left post by Captain Len for the opening score. The early pressure is not sustained and Country have us under pressure in the last minute or two of quarter time. The second goal never seemed to be quite there despite a good overlapping run down the right by Jim “Elvis” Malcolm and then Richard Norton, notwithstanding recent knee surgery, who made a supreme effort to run onto a pass deep into the right corner, nailing the cross to the top of the circle where Alan “Sting” Stewart was unable to convert. 

Even Goalie Col would have agreed that his footwork today was not deft enough to have earned him a million dollar transfer to Man.United. “Lunger” had a deflection into the net disallowed for the second day in succession and then made two spectacular dives in the 3rd term to give some credence to his nickname – only problem was there was a despairing gap between stick and ball !!! Phil “Rhino” Metcalf tweaked a hammy and did not run out in the last term. The Country team had us on the run after several turnovers and were unlucky not to score with Kenny Walter hitting the ball over the top of the goal and Murray Sharp striking the right hand-post from a penalty corner.  

With some of our boys looking tired, Simon “Thommo” Thomson in the dug-out pulls two unscheduled match-winning changes off the bench, putting Len and Lunger back on the field. No sooner had this happened than WA Country score the equaliser with 8 minutes to go and spurred on by this they smell the scent of victory. They have us under the hammer again and it’s four minutes to go when “Ferret” Challenor picks up the clearance down the right wing, crosses to Lunger who mistimes his sweep at gaol from 6 metres and the ball goes harmlessly wide – maybe our last chance gone ? Country defence clears the ball and again have our defence stretched as we try to hang on for the draw. The clock runs down into the final minute and with 37 seconds on the clock we win a free hit just outside our attacking circle. With the game in the balance and the W.A supporters on the edge of their seats, Captain Len measures his options and, cool as you like, strikes the ball onto Lunger’s stick whose deflection rebounds off the goalies pads with Lunger picking up the rebounding ball into the net. You could say that this was the day that “Three-Scorers” stole Three Points. 

W.A voted Peter Eastlake as Best Player for W.A Country and Len Blyth was given the same accolade by the opposition. Fairest and Best for W.A. as voted by our team went to Simon Williams.

Result: WA 2 - WAC 1

Goal scorers: L. Blyth, S. Williams

WA vs VIC - Thursday, October 4, 2007

Jen and Amanda confessed to some bad feelings about today’s game v. the Vics as they set out this morning legging it down to Surfers for an early morning coffee and to purchase the team shopping for tonights BBQ. Travel time to Surfer’s from Main Beach was twice as quick on foot as the time taken by the pick-up Tarago driven by Alan to collect the girls + the food back to the apartments. Clearly Alan’s motoring skills would not have given him a qualifying drive in the Indy 500, the stands and perimeter fencing sprouting everywhere as the morning rolled on into midday, with roadblocks every “whichway”. But maybe there’s a wind of change in the air, with the team talk open to the floor. Tactics are agreed upon and there’s no turning back.  

We’re running out on Ground 1 with the W.A 65’s supporting us en masse from the Grandstand. The sea-breeze is in and the temperature has dropped ten degrees. The boys are fired up and we have the Vics under some early pressure.  

At the back Pedro softens up star Vic forward “Hollywood” dropping him to the deck – “well, as the ball came across he tried to run through me” – penalty conceded just outside the circle - Thommo utters an unprintable – but defence holds well. All round the ground the team is putting pressure on the opposition to obtain the turnover, the forwards are running the angles and receiving good through-balls from the midfield and we are rewarded with a penalty corner. Brian “Pidgin” Soares spears the ball out with pin-point accuracy onto the Captain’s stick, the ball is laid off to the left and there is Alan “The Sting” Stewart to fire the ball home like an Exocet missile. It’s a one goal lead and just reward for a huge Team effort.  

At the back Colin “Tug” Benporath is making some great saves, ably supported late in the first half when the Vics have a short corner by Jim “Elvis” Malcolm who skilfully deflects the shot on goal wide of the right hand-post. No sooner were we thinking that we could turn ahead at the main break, than the Vics pull a goal back with a minute to go.  

This has the effect of stinging Team “Three –Scorers” into action as we run out after the half-time. Within minutes we have won a short corner which this time has Len laying the ball off right where Mal Horrigan (is he still “Hagar” ?) finds “Lunger” three metres out from the right-hand post and the ensuing push at goal strikes a defender’s foot. The umpire deems it a penalty flick.  

There’s a sudden surge of adrenaline for three players who had earlier claimed that they would be happy to volunteer to take the flicks. But there is no call from Captain Len ……..who was clearly taking no chances. He steps up to the spot and calmly slots the ball home, and we’re back in front.  

The Vics, finding themselves behind again, are looking a little rattled. Five minutes later and we’re attacking again after an overlapping run down the right wing by “Elvis” who hits the ensuing long corner and finds a Victorian boot infringing. As the defence run out they can’t decide whether Len will go left or right – the momentary pause as he holds the ball until they are committed and there’s a gaping hole just to left of centre and suddenly we’re 3 – 1 in front and the girls are on their feet cheering in the stand. The Victorian goalie is making a lot of noise too - he goes completely ballistic at the umpire screaming that if our No.10 player continues to run in off the shorts and obstruct his vision then he’ll take him out next time .  

At the other end Goalie “Tug” and the defence hold firm, Richard Norton’s run down the left with a 720 degree pirouette to hold the ball and prevent a turnover exemplifies the team’s fierce determination not to give away possession at any price. Brian “Pidgin” Soares is playing with some dash down the left-wing and is well-positioned at the left post on two occasions late in the game when Bill “Flasher” Price drills a couple of long passes from the right flank – the fact that Brian’s is not low enough on the ground is clearly the fault of the Team Trainer for neglecting adequate spinal flexion exercises at the warm-up. And despite his official connections as Team Manager, “Pidgin” won the accolade of being the first recipient of a Yellow-card.  

It should be placed on record that the said “chopping” offence that drew the ire of the Umpire, clearly made less of an impact on the team several of whom, including the Captain, were completely unaware that we spent five minutes playing with only ten men on the ground. As the clock runs down, the Victorians progressively lose their game plan and resort to long-hitting, as our boys closely-mark and cut out all their options. 

The vanquishing of the Vics was a big all-round Team Effort and the resounding singing on the bus home said it all. 

W.A voted Bruce Jacobs as Best Player for Victoria, with the Vics making Colin Benporath best player for W.A.  

Fairest and Best for W.A. as voted by our team went to …… (to be announced)

Result: WA 3 - VIC 1

Goal Scorers: A. Stewart (1), L. Blyth (2)

WA vs SA - Sunday, October 7, 2007

We’re up with the church bells for an early morning start as we troop onto the team coach for the run up to Brisbane. Some of us are barely awake and will extend our slumber on the bus-trip, while others reflect on the two rest days recalling a night of boisterous singing after our team BBQ following Thursday’s victory v. the Vics when all were on a high. Choirmaster Jim “Elvis” Malcolm had written a new team song which was sung with such gusto that the Security guard was dispatched to call a halt to proceedings on the premise that the Noise Abatement Act had been breached. 

“Rhino” had time to pay a visit to the local Physiotherapist on the pretext of a hammy problem and, having rested from Game 3, has advised the Coach that he is fit to run today. Not so Roger “the Rock” Jewel - having played a solid game against the Vics he is now hampered by a chest wall injury – rumour has it that he sneezed violently but the damage had already been done after a collision on the field. Saturday morning’s waterway cruise provided a relaxing interlude for those that sailed. The golfing trio of Pedro, Elvis and Lunger found their way to the woodland course of Robina Woods with its winding fairways, streams, lakes and birdlife. The course won the day, but there were some memorable shots - occasional golfer Elvis’s rifle-like drive 250 metres down the middle of the 1st fairway, Pedro’s holing out from the greenside bunker on the 10th, and Lungers’ birdie 4 across the water at the 18th to the twinkling lights of the clubhouse in the fading light were memories to take away. 

As the slumberers on the bus awake from their Power Nap and disembark at the Brisbane Hockey stadium for the 9.30a.m. start, the trailing Tarago is nowhere to be seen. Apparently driver Graham “Ferret” Challenor has taken the scenic route via the City centre and has totally lost his way. Navigator “Rhino” seems more concerned with accounting for the extra cost in fuel. So, with mobile phone link-up, “Ground-Control “Roger the Rock” calls them in.  

At the opening of the game we start with good structure, plenty of square passing to create the transfer of play, building the attacks, moving forward as a unit. After twelve minutes Phil “the Phantom” Thunder ghosts his way through the opposition defence and fires on goal with lightening precision. If the SA goalie thought he had it covered our “Lunger” had other ideas and the fine deflection ensured the goal.  

Before long we are attacking again, a penalty corner is won, and the ball is laid to the right. “Phantom” draws the defence, flicks the ball left and there is Stewart “The Sting” to crack the ball goalwards. “Lunger” claims another fine deflection - at cricket he’s a “walker” like Gillie (you know when you’ve got a tickle…… so to speak !!!), but the goal really belongs to Stewart.  

At the other end the defence is stretched by a mobile SA forward-line who would be rueing the adage “Goals Win Games”. As we move deep into the first half our defenders are heroic with Captain Len deflecting a certain goal around the left post, goalie “Tug” fending a ball wide with his stick, and “Ferret” back on the goal-line deflecting another certain goal outside the right post. 

It’s a hot, hazy morning and we’re playing in energy-sapping conditions - we’re down on fluids but up on goals at the half-time break. Roger “the Rock” is running the bench today to rest his chest wall injury, Phil “Rhino” Metcalf is back but, like Richard, is a bit proppy. So our back-up troops are a thin on the ground, and with an element of fatigue setting in, the South Aussies are lifting.  

SA’s star forward Ajit Bhullar weaves past defenders, making a superb solo run into the circle and hammers home the goal. We struggle to hang onto our diminishing lead and, unable to regain some composure, we resort to the long ball and the opposition rebound again to make it 2 – 2.  

“The Phantom” is green-carded for infringing another Ajit run, “Ferret” is bowled unceremoniously to the deck, and Simon “Thommo” Thomson hobbles off with a sore calf after some heroic deeds at left half-back.  

The final changes are made and we manage to re-group and force a short corner. From the ensuing play the ball falls to Alan “The Sting” Stewart and dragging the defender with him as he goes wide on the left, strikes the ball with the reverse-stick on the run to find the back of the net.  

With 8 minutes to go, this was the “Play of the Day” and the “Turning Point”, and as the clock runs down we are back with another short – Brian is there at the left-post for “The Sealer” and we come away with our 3rd win on the trot. 

W.A voted left-half Terry Daly as Best Player for South Australia. The South Aussies gave their award to Alan Stewart whose team-mates came up with same result – well deserved Stewie !!!

Result: WA 4 - SA 1

Goal Scorers: A. Stewart (2 or 1), S. Williams (1 or 2), B. Soares (1)

Fairest and best: Alan Stewart

WA vs QLD - Monday, October 8, 2007

It’s an 8 a.m. start, so there’s an early curfew on Sunday night. At the team BBQ, head chef “Ferret” has the meat sizzling and Jen’s gourmet salads and dessert provide fuel for the impending battle v. Queensland. Thunder passes judgement on the Reds, thunder passes overhead, the forks pierce “Ferret’s” succulent offerings, and forked lightening dazzles the skies. The heavens open, Thor is angry and we hope to be an angrier thorn in the Queensland side. The dawn breaks and the skies are clear but it’s a still and sultry morning as we arrive at the stadium by 7 a.m. The bench is down to one reserve, maybe two if you count Simon “Thommo” who will test his dodgy calf in the first quarter. Mal “Hagar” Horrigan is out with a hammy …”or it might be from my back” - one might muse as to whether he has been to the therapist and had a “Mal-adjustment”. And Roger “The Rock”? – well he’s still ‘Rock the Crock’. 

The Queenslanders are running hard at us from the opening whistle, and have our defence under pressure. It’s apparent early in the game that their key player is the willowy Keith Chay who ten minutes into the game makes an attacking run to the top of the circle, changes directions five times leaving helpless defenders in his wake and fires the ball home for the opening salvo. Our attacks down the right are few and far between as the Maroons have us closely marked but Chip “The Ferret” Challenor, playing today in the right-half position, is returning the compliment to his opposite number and decks him. Brian “Pidgin” Soares is picking up some good balls down the left wing and we go close when a shot from “The Sting” goes wide. Thommo’s calf is not feeling good and he takes himself off . Colin “Tug” Benporath is making some great saves at the back, but we fail to clear the ball from the circle and in the ensuing melee a Queensland forward gets the touch and they are two in front. But there’s a never-say-die attitude in the team today and we win a penalty corner. As agreed, no numbers are called by Captain Len - this is to ensure that not only do the opposition have zero chance of breaking the code, but our forwards have not the least idea of what’s about to unfold – this is actually a training manoeuvre engineered by the Captain to make certain that EVERY player expects that he might actually receive a pass and is accordingly ready for action. This time he goes left where “the Sting” fires his barb at the defence and there’s “Rhino” to bulldoze the ball on and into the goal. The Queenslanders rebound and before long mount another attack and for a brief moment we think that Pedro has been heroic in pushing the ball off the goal-line. But the umpire deems that the ball has caught Pedro on the foot and it’s a penalty stroke that’s awarded So we’re two goals down it at the break, but there remains an air of determination about the team as we head out for the second half. We lift our game but it’s to no avail as the opposition score their 4th for the morning.. We’re down to the last twelve minutes and Simon “Thommo” Thomson is back on the ground – it transpires that he’s been walkabout, a Physio appointment in the middle of the game – can you believe that ? We press hard up front and win the short corner, which way will he go this time - it’s left again, but “the Sting” is ready and angles the shot across to the right, “Lunger” is ready too, ball comes back left just outside the post and there is “Pidgin” to steer the ball home. AS the final two minutes runs down on the clock, Simon “Thommo” finds himself defending again and as the sticks clash the ball rebounds at right angle to the pitch and strikes said “Thommo” a glancing blow to the bridge of the nose. The facial anatomy looks no worse than before, there’s no blood but “Thommo” has had enough – he’s off to the bench, and that’s it.  

W.A voted Keith Shay as the Best Player for Queensland, and the Maroons nominated Simon as best player for W.A.. As “Thommo” was called forward to receive the award, even he admitted to feeling a little diffident about it for, despite his nasal injury, he did confess that he was off the ground for two-thirds of the game and implied that perhaps the award was intended for another recipient. On reflection, perhaps the injury gained him enough sympathy votes that he was able to nose ahead, although some of his worthier team-mates who had toiled for four quarters might be forgiven for thinking that Simon’s award was a little on the nose. 

Result: WA 2 - QLD 4

Goal Scorers: P. Metcalf (1), B. Soares (1)

Fairest and best: Graham Challenor

WA vs ACT - Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The match report has been delayed – rumour has it that the team reporter’s serum Shiraz has reached such a level that his brain is clouded as to the day’s events.  

However, it should be noted that the W.A. Night yesterday evening was a big success with the number of participating Western Australian teams the highest on record since the inception of Australian Veteran’s Hockey Championships. Team Three-Scorers songwriter Jim “Elvis” Malcolm master-minded the evening’s entertainment, leading a robust team choir in a rendition of the team-song together with three other numbers. It was duly noted that Coach Crossen led his 65’s team off home prematurely while the singing was in progress - a move that we presume was because of his team’s 8 a.m. game the next morning, and that it had nothing whatsoever to do with the pitch of the singers !!!  

And as for the pitch today ? - well, it was a turf pitch with a difference – played throughout in sweltering heat, and no sooner had the team reached the beer tent after the game than the heavens opened again. But this time, not only was the pitch waterlogged, it was also covered in hailstones. The good thing about being marooned in the beer-tent when there’s a sub-tropical rain and hailstorm is that you can’t actually go anywhere else – so you just shrug your shoulders and drink more beer. The after-the-game stories are embellished even further and we recall “Ferret” being momentarily floored after a clash of heads, Ferret claiming not only being hit on the head by a head, but also being struck in the face by a flying hockey stick as he fell, and to add further insult to injury, he insists that the ball also dropped onto his face – in fact, the triple whamee. It was further rumoured in the beer-tent that Ferret’s revival was enhanced, as he opens his eyes, by the sight of a blonde physiotherapist in a low-cut sports-top leaning over him checking his pupil reaction. We are not permitted to reveal the exact anatomical land-marks upon which our Ferret feasts his eyes, but it can be reported that the attending blonde said “I want you to come off” ……… the exact inference of this remark is not entirely clear, but Ferret follows, tongue hanging out. Simultaneously, spectator Irene leaps from her seat in the stand and challenging for the 200 metre Olympic record, is seen to sprint round the perimeter of the hockey field in order to provide a chaperone during the ensuing Rehab.  

With the deluge from above still pounding down onto the beer-tent, Simon “Lunger” Williams, having received his second green card of the tournament (again for a very trivial offence !!!), was invited to make the presentation to the opposition best player and reflects that star A.C.T. player Gerin Hingee was also decked twice during the game, following close attention from Captain Len – only problem being that Hingee kept getting back up again, which wasn’t quite in our game-plan. Presentations done, rain is still beating down in torrents, there’s no hockey to watch as the ground’s awash, the beer’s all finished, so bus-driver Len brings the team bus adjacent to the tent to be outdone by Irene who magnanimously drives the Tarago through the middle of the tent to allow the rest of us to avoid a drenching. 

As to the Hockey match report, there isn’t one – well, who wants to read it anyway when you play some very ordinary hockey and lose 1 – 0 !!!! 

W.A voted left-half Bob Edmonds as Best Player for A.C.T. and A.C.T. nominated Len Blyth as best player for W.A. 

Result: WA 0 - ACT 1

Fairest and best: Peter Hearne

WA vs TAS - Thursday, October 11, 2007

Six games in eight days takes its toll on the bodies of old farts hockey players. So Wednesday’s rest day in Week Two is a godsend. The generously heated spa is a popular destination. An outsider observing ageing gentlemen in the spa could be forgiven for curiously wondering whether some of the unusual anatomical poses were designed to achieve either a rectal lavage or some sort of erotic variant. WE know that such posturing is designed purely and simply to achieve maximal water-jet stimulation of aching hamstrings, adductors, and Gluteus Maximus. We sleep in late, rolling out of bed after 9a.m. – even the insomniacs led by Roger “The Rock” permit themselves a lie-in until a quarter to seven.!!! Leisurely breakfasts and coffees done, a group of six head out in the Tarago via hills and valleys to Mount Tambourine and its scenic panorama across the inland plains. A waterside luncheon at Paradise Point before turning for home completed the 6 hour trip. 
The golfing quintet of Pedro, Bill, Len, Stewie and Lunger took a ‘drive’ to the Colonial Club, but ‘Chip’ was not amongst us. He had to ‘iron’ out his injuries. We needed more fuel in the bus and when the first petrol station had a massive queue for the on-special deals, we stopped at the next deserted one only to find that they had run out of fuel – this was clearly the thin end of the ‘wedge’. Driver Len, at this point looking pretty ‘green’, did not wish to be ‘holed out’ somewhere with an empty tank - the next petrol station was a ‘fare way’ away but we made it. As to the golf, the water ‘of course’ won the day – no less than 24 balls disappearing into the drink – Pedro, and Westy from Queensland, were also disappearing into the drink – a rum pairing if there ever was one. And the battle with the Vics ? - that was duly won by Stewie and Lunger. 

As for the stretches that the the Team Trainer has exhorted his players to do on their day off ? Well, at least Len was taking a captain’s lead - he was seen to be stretching early on Thursday morning but all that this amounted to was Len treading on the toe end of his hockey socks and stretching them to ensure that they had not shrunken since being in the washing-machine. 

So, well rested, a new dawn breaks and for Team Three-Scorers this is the day of reckoning, it’s Round 7, but it’s like a Final - we have to win, or we are on the early plane. Team Trainer “Lunger” has 15 finely-tuned athletes warming up and stretching and ready to go ( well, only thirteen if you omit injured teammates Mal and Richard) (or maybe only eleven if “Rock” and “Rhino” injuries don’t last the pace). The Vics have given WA Country a pasting and they are now so far ahead of us on goal-difference that it doesn’t matter.  

The game starts with the Tassie team all in attack, we just aren’t in the game, and after 8 minutes they have opened the scoring. We’re are in a state of shock, not a state of excitement at all. Ferret is mounting counter-attacks down the right and 6 minutes later we win a penalty corner. Len decides it is to be variation 21 this time but WE know the shot’s going right or left or centre which gives a one in three odds of us being correct. Phil “the Phantom” picked it right, and there he was to thunder the ball home inside the post. We’re back in the game, the girls are on their feet in the grandstand, but we can’t rely on a draw as A.C.T. are breathing down our neck. The boys at the back are surviving to keep out the Tassie attack, but Mal “Hagar” Horrigan is not. A team man, if ever there was one, Mal puts his dodgy hammy on the line and has run out in the first quarter but sadly his hammy has run it’s race and he is replaced off the bench by the redoubtable Bill “Flasher” Price. Before long we’re up the other end and it’s our turn for a penalty corner. The ball is rifled out by Brian “Pidgin” Soares, the Captain traps, pauses, defence is committed, ball goes like an arrow to the right post and there is Graham “ The Ferret” Challenor to deflect the ball home. We hang on and its 2 -1 at the break.  

There’s a hush in the stand as we come out for the second half – can we hang on ? More attacks down the right-wing by Ferret have us on the offence again, the “Phantom” Thunder strokes the ball sweetly into the congested circle. The crowd are hushed - but there is “Lunger”, that very lucky hockey player who, with sleight of hand and the deftness of touches deflects the ball behind his back, like a French cut at cricket, and up pops “Ferret” on the right post to steer the ball home. We’re 3-1 up and the fat lady is stretching her vocal cords, but there’s still 22 minutes on the clock. The Tassie Tigers are not done yet, they’re pushing hard at our defence. There’s momentary panic in the camp as a Tassie shot on goal strikes Jim”Elvis” Malcolm on the foot – he is right on the goal-line but our Jim, honest as the day is long, insists that his foot was outside the left-hand post. The umpires confer as to whether it is a penalty stroke – both are saying that they were unsighted, so it’s a penalty corner, the Tasmanian forwards stuff up and we survive but only briefly. They work back, deep into our defensive territory and get as soft a goal as you could ever see, with the ball barely trickling across the line - it’s 3-2 and they lift further, pressuring our defence into a short corner – ball comes out to their left, a clean strike from the inner and suddenly it’s 3 – 3 with eight minutes left, and the fat lady is now nowhere to be seen. “Flasher” Price, who has witnessed all three Tassie goals from the dug-out, is back on the field – is he the one to get us home ?  

It is now that Masterly Mal, running the changes off the bench, pulls his ace from the pack and sends “Rhino” to left wing. As tiring players from both sides are finding that their tanks are running low in the humid conditions, the game becomes end-to-end hockey. With two minutes left on the clock, we repel a Tassie thrust and mount a rapier-like counter-attack down the left. Alan “The Sting” Stewart throws the ball wide to the left wing and there is the galloping Phil “Rhino” Metcalf. The running forwards have spread-eagled the Tassie defence and with “Phantom” Phil at the top of the circle, “Lunger” on the spot, and ”Ferret” at the far post, the fat lady is back in the stand. “Rhino’s” pass from the left wing comes like a tracer bullet and there is the “Ferret” to steer it home. It’s all over bar the shouting and the fat lady bursts into full song. 

W.A voted Brenton Peck as Best Player for Tasmania. Tasmania nominated Len Blyth as best player for W.A. 

Fairest and Best for W.A. as voted by our team went to Phil Thunder.

Result: WA 4 - TAS 3

Goal scorers: P. Thunder (1), G. Challenor (3)

Semi-Final - WA vs QLD - Friday, October 12, 2007

It’s been a long road since July when the team was selected. Following the early Sunday morning training sessions we left Perth for the Gold Coast without undue expectations of how we would perform. Yesterday’s last qualifying game to get us into the Semi’s perhaps exceeded those expectations – it was like a preliminary final, no second chance and today we are faced with another knock-out game in the semi-final. A draw is no good to us as Queensland finished as top team to our 4th place and will go through in the event of a draw. We derive a degree of self-satisfaction as the only team to have scored (twice) against No.1 side Queensland in the preliminary games. Sadly Richard’s knee is rebelling against running so he will run the bench today, and hamstrung Mal has had to fly back to Perth for family reasons, and we’ll miss him too. Another lightening storm with deluging rain last night has blown through but it’s steamy hot for the 2pm game. Captain Len had us in suspense last night as he was breathalysed on the way back to the apartments. His two beers and half a bottle of red must have had him very close to the mark – there seemed to be an inordinately long silence following Len’s blow down the tube, but we were eventually waved through. Team manager, Brian, thoughtfully called us on the mobile phone to advise that there was a booze-bus en route home - however, said phone call came when Len had long since waved farewell to the cops.  

We arrive at the ground – it’s sweltering…..again. Team Three-Scorers run out for the Semi-Final and line up v. the host team. Three cheers are called for the opposition, we’re in the huddle for the rendering of the pre-match Team song – with the final bars the sticks rise into the air in unison – but is this to be the ‘Swan-song’ ? We’re off and running. Pedro, as sweeper, and the back for four are holding firm and, with Colin in goal, we are repelling the Queensland attacks. Our forays forward are less penetrating with the Maroons defence showing us why they have been so difficult to score against. Pedro’s clean hits out of defence are clean and crisp as always, but the forwards find if difficult to provide good targets as we are closely marked. The opposition are pressing again and win a penalty corner, the ball comes out and moves left and the crisp hit rattles the backboards. We are one behind and it stays that way until the break. Queensland continue the pressure in the second-half, we have few options running off the bench to give tiring players a rest, and after 15 minutes they go a further goal ahead after another short corner. Two goals behind is a tough assignment but it’s a mountain to climb when it becomes three after a long diagonal hit out of the Queensland defence travels all the way to our line and strikes the right-hand post only to rebound directly into the pathway of the attacking right-wing who guides the ball into the goal. We press hard in the last 15 minutes making some good attacking runs and with a minute to go we force our only short corner. It has been a feature of the tournament that 11 of our 15 goals have come from short corners. For a brief moment it looks like we have another, but the defending full-back infringes on the goal-line and we are awarded a penalty flick. Captain Len, clearly intent on ensuring that his name tops the list of goal-scorers steps up once again – which way will he go, right or left, high or low ? The wily Len thinks that the goalie will outguess him and commit to the right …..or maybe to the left …, cunningly, Len decides to go straight at him, a masterly move except when the goalie stays put. The final siren blows, Queensland are home 3 -0 and it’s goodbye Gold Coast !!! 

Len Blyth and Colin Benporath were selected to play for the Australian O/60’s team to tour to Beijing in August 2007.

Result: WA 0 - QLD 3