Saturday, August 24, 2013

All About Me

Thought I might do a quick article about me now and whats been happening since March last year and what I've been up too!

Well as some of you may have read, in March I played my first ever finals game in any sport i've ever played! Baseball - which looks like the game for me as I venture to retirement of all sport (You'll see why soon), was giving my my first taste of what Finals is being that every other sport my team had bombed out.

I spent a good portion of my life playing football @ Happy Valley Football Club, back then, The Vikings, had one of the most successful seniors team around, sadly I was in juniors at that time.. All throughout my time in juniors playing Under 15's, 17's and then 18's when they changed the rules around, my team was thoroughlly thrashed at most games, some games even belted by 30 goals...

When I moved to the C grade it was a bit different, we weren't getting the thrashings but were missing finals by one or two wins..

Knee Injury forced me to finish up with Happy Valley as well as moving out north west to be living with my now wife... My final season with the Vikings was the year after my knee went caput but was prob one of my most successful seasons - kicking 10 goals in one game and finishing with approx 50 in the 10 games I played that season...

But that was 12 odd years ago and now my main focus is Baseball, with East Torrens Red Sox! We had a pretty good season, matching it against the top teams and heading into a Semi Final against Adelaide, it was there I suffered not only a broken bone in the nose.. but also a chipped bone in the forehead and a broken thumb.. All in same game and happening at different times in the game.. (Hey we won though but that was season over for me!)

Worst thing was heading off to the Soundwave Festival with no painkillers, a broken thumb, a head that looked like a horn was growing and a purple nose.. Basically looked like I had been in a really bad fight - nope, just me stopping the baseball with my head!

Our team went on to narrowly miss the grand final by 1 run.

Since then i've been studying and also decided on a return to football....

With Studying I've always had an interest in plants and bonsai etc, but never been able to do some things i've wanted to do with them like growing from seed, cultivating etc.

Whilst talking about this at work a collegue mentioned the local government has a skills for all scheme happening where they will fund approx 200 courses for free to better equip people in our state.. Nice!

I wandered on there and found a Certificate II in Horticulture, had a quick look and thought it looked quite interesting so applied! Three subjects in and i've aced each one and getting excellent feedback from the lecturer (Ha, never got that in finance!!)

So, the return to Football, possibly not my finest of ideas but I had it for the right intentions.

The intention was never to be this awesome footballer to come and kick a bag of goals for my local team, it was to fill in whilst they were short on numbers. Broadview Football Club has 4 senior teams, One Division 1 side and its Reserves team, and the other is in Division 7 with a Reserves team.

The Reserves for Division 7 were running low on numbers so I thought i'd whack on a guernsey and see what happens.

Now, I'm alot older since I last played football and definately don't have the fitness levels I had back then... I found first training quite challenging to say the least haha Found alot of the time I was hands on head sucking in as much air as I could.

But with that the players were very welcoming, even the higher grades, always encouraging you to keep at it.

The first few games of the year my team had won so I was looking forward to getting in and kicking some goals from the forward line, sadly the higher grades sustained some injuries so alot of our better players moved up to fill the void, some even had to play 2 games each weekend straight after each other..

With the loss of players came with some of our heaviest defeats, my first game against Flinders Park saw a huge loss, infact my only shot on goal came in the 3rd quarter I think it was when I took a mark about 40metres out and had a shot on goal, looked good initially however didn't allow enough for the wind and it narrowly missed.. Shame, if I nailed it I would have been the leading goal scorer.... Highlight though was standing an ex Adelaide Crows player Sudjai Cook who was lazily standing on the Half Back Line. Wow - he still has speed, he was just standing there rebounding the ball and moving it with great skills - was great to watch.

In the end I played 5 games, the fateful game for me came after a week long Adelaide drenching where the heavens truly opened up giving us a taste of a true old fashioned Adelaide Winter!

The final game was very water logged but also the ground sunk when you walked on it. I was placed at Centre Half Forward which is where I did play alot of Junior Footy, my favourite role is Full Forward.

Half way through the 1st quarter one of our big left footers took a mark on the right hand wing just forward of our goals, I was walking just inside our 50 ready to lead and all I could hear from the bench was Lead Lead!!! so I bolted towards him, for a big guy I do have early speed and got a few steps infront of the defender, 2 players were sitting under the ball which was perfect for a screamer...

As I approached the 2 players I proceeded to ready Launch! But it was at this point my right foot sunk in the mud and got stuck, by that time though all my weight was on the right leg and it buckled at the knee, I felt it pop out as I launched into the pack, still got my hands to the ball but knew I was in big trouble...

One thing I remember was one of our much smaller players, his face cracks me up each time I think about it - As I hit the pack and was on my way down he was at the front looking up as what prob looked to him as a wall of mass coming towards him - his face showed pure terror and fear as I fastly approached, I turned my shoulder and bang. He was flattened - quite hard too, I mean I am a big unit...

I layed there knowing my knee had gone, I had a quick feel around and could instantly feel my Medial was like jelly - my lateral and others felt ok though, massive pain from the bone on my right side but the ligaments felt good on that side.

They carried me off and I sat on the bench icing away. Good thing was I can still put weight on it so was able to hobble to the changerooms, grab my keys and stuff and drive down to the local Sportsmed for a check.

Initial fears were quickly brought to light, Grade 2, possible Grade 3 tear of the Medial Ligament. F it. I also suffered severe bone bruising on the right hand side of my knee..

So began my recoup and soon rehab, I even experienced acupuncture for the first time ever - won't be my last but it also won't be the first thing I run off to go and get if I'm in the mood for pain!

That was approx 8 weeks ago and my leg is much better, it still isn't ready for anything but I am walking ok and now have the knee brace off. Stupidity has set me back a few weeks as I slowly jogged around the oval with my youngest daughter, sadly the weight on my knee really put too much pressure on the right hand side and have aggravated the bone bruising..

So now pain when I walk but it is getting better.

As we speak right now, I am preparing for my sons final football game for the year and he ventures towards starting Baseball for another season. I too will return just not sure if it will be Round 1 (Physio believes it will be) or later in the round like round 4.

My Richmond Tigers are in the finals for the first time since 2001 when we were cruely knocked out of the Prelim Final, we are still 2 games to play but its likely we'll finish 5th and play Port in the first round of the finals. Both Noah and I are extremely looking forward to this!

Earlier in the year we decided we would take the family to the Gold Coast for 10 days, that meant no Melbourne trip for Noah and I unless we made the finals... sure enough they made it! So we're anxiously awaiting to see what day they will be playing so we can fly in and hopefully fly out same day.

So now you know what i've been up too, hope to add more posts over the next few weeks and push my blog to 100 articles!