End of an Era

6 months since I last blogged? It really doesn’t feel that long.

Looking back, it has been a up and down and then up again period for football. The up involved the Blitz making Britbowl XXIX (that’s 29 right?) and getting back in to the GB groove. The down, well lets say Blitz didn’t win the Britbowl.

Before we got there, we played in  the Champions League Final 4 and played against Belgrade SBB Vukovi  in one of the hottest match  day experiences I’ve been involved with (28 degrees in the sun with no shade or breeze).

I know we lost but I’ve included the stats from the day to reflect what a great job the OL did. Its a shame we didn’t get the result our performance really deserved.

Blitz Vs SBB Highlights

Blitz Vs SBB Game Day Stats

Sideline for Blitz vs SBB
Sideline for the game (on top of a shopping centre)

To get to the final we had to bounce back from the heavy defeat that the London Warriors had inflicted on us earlier in the season. We won the return leg at Finsbury Park and moved through the play offs which included the ever “fun” trip to East Kilbride Pirates.

Leading up to the final, I had to make a tough call on a linemen selction to the OC for the game. Its never easy to have to make a call like this and it always makes me feel like I’ve let my players down but sometimes these descions need to be a made and are a part of coaching.

Home of the Brit Bowl 2015
Home of the Brit Bowl 2015

I really felt like we had done everything we needed too to be ready for the game. It didn’t go out way, we did to many of the small things wrong or poorly and it was to close at the end. Its a sporting cliché but the scoreboard really doesn’t lie.

And with that my association as a coach for the Blitz was over.  I’d been there for a long time, first helping out in 2005 and then joining the staff on a full time basis in 2007, the first year Blitz won the big game. Its just time to move on and I’ve enjoyed every moment (for the most part). More air miles and more European wins than I really remember, one European title, four National Championships and countless great players and coaching staff, its been a great ride.

And for old times sake, here’s a picture of the University Of Hertfordshire players at the Blitz with the trophy.

 

My first Britbowl win

At the moment my focus is on getting the GB OL ready for the Group B tournament in September and I have been asked by a couple of clubs to attend their practices and do an OL session. After fourteen years of coaching, I’m going to enjoy the Sundays when I’m not involved with football and work on my tan.

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