Report by Jodi Tiver
South Midlands club held the first tournament within the central zone for the 2009 WA season on August 29th & 30th, and with 42 teams nominated it was certainly going to be a big weekend! The weather didn’t look all that favourable on Friday with trucks rolling in before lunchtime, but it had cleared by Saturday morning which dawned very cold and frosty. The excitement had actually started before the teams had even taken the field with the host club’s captain Ben Thomas and wife Suzette Thomas (recent Australian captain) welcoming their very first child, a baby girl, on the Friday night! This did throw a little spanner in the works for the South Midlands A Grade with Ben being one of the strongest players, but Suz, ever the good polocrosse wife, gave Ben a leave pass and he arrived just in time for their afternoon game against the Walkaway team. Jeff Martin was back from injury for them and doubled up for their first game in the morning.
Walkaway, although missing one of their strongest players in Trent Cooper, did provide one of the upsets for the weekend rolling the South Midlands Team on Saturday. They also had another good win against Foothills in the morning and the strong and well horsed Perth team also went through undefeated. With 5 teams this set up a big clash between Perth and South Midlands Sunday morning with Souths needing the win to still be in contention and they pulled it off after a slow start against a flat looking Perth team. This put a real spin on the afternoon game between Walkway and Perth!! If Walkaway were to win they would take the cup but if Perth won it would all go down to goal count between Souths, Perth and Walkway who all would have 3 wins on the board each after South Midlands got some runs on the board against Foothills that afternoon.
The so called ‘final’ provided some fantastic fast action and skilful polocrosse and with PJ Hall changing to a 3 and finally finding some form after a few quiet games in the number 2 spot, their chukka of Rob Sibley, Matt Welsh and PJ kicked away from the Walkway team throwing a big 7-0 chukka in the 5th. But unfortunately this wasn’t enough to secure them the 6 goal win they needed to take the trophy and South Midlands ran out the eventual winners on goal count. Not a great way to win, but it was a win for the blue and reds all the same!
There was also some great polocrosse played in the B Grade which had a massive 7 teams in the mix! With Moony and Greenough not being able to field an A Grade due to some absent players and Walkway fielding 2 teams they were certainly some of the favourites. The mix of young and old players for the Foothills club were also doing some damage and after some very close games including the final which ended in a draw due to a very unfortunate accident they were the winners!!
Well done to the South Midlands club on a great weekend and good to see so many teams and good polocrosse played throughout the weekend.
South Midlands won on goal count (Perth runners up)
South Midlands Team: BJ Thomas, Jeff Martin, Ben Thomas, Adrian Cobley, Bruce Smith & Scott Gurney
Perth Team: Robert Sibley, PJ Hall, Matt Welsh, Jason Stowe, Sharna Hall & Michael Semmens
Champion A Grade Horse: ‘Spider’ ridden by Ben Thomas and Jeff Martin (2 games each)
Foothills won on goal count (Moonyoonooka runners up)
Foothills Team: Chris Corbett, Sandy Corbett, Greg Rodwell, Graham Tiver, Mick Rynne & Julie Bolingbroke
Moonyoonooka Team: John Clohessy, Perry Cusack, Pete Howden, Alana Clohessy, Trish Jones & Vanessa Freeman
Champion B Grade Horse: ‘Boo’ ridden by Alana Clohessy
*Sincere commiserations on behalf of the Polocrosse Association of WA to John and Alana for the loss of this wonderful horse.
Foothills d Irwin
Foothills Team: James Mathwin, Holly Ludeman, Tom Mathwin, Paul Corbett, Mick Mathwin & Steve McMurray
Champion C Grade Horse: ‘Scooby’ ridden by Rachael Cobley
C Grade Mixed
Perth d South Midlands
Champion C Grade Mixed Horse: ‘Edenhope Elphin’ ridden by James Lester
Walkaway d Kojonup
Champion D Grade Horse: ‘Caesar’ ridden by Megan Keightley
Walkaway d Foothills
Champion E Grade Horse: ‘JB’ ridden by Jess Pulia