Now that we have reached the mid-season break it’s time to reflect upon the events of the first half of the season.
ON THE PITCH
Our women’s 1st XI have made an encouraging start to their return season in the EHL. They currently lie in 7th place in the East Conference, although they’ve drawn more games than they would probably like.
The men’s 1st XI have had a mixed season so far in the East League Premier Division A. Just four wins means they lie in 8th place, which is lower than their pool of talent suggests they should be.
Elsewhere, the women’s 3rd XI, men’s 3rd XI and 7th XI are leading the way as they all occupy top spot in their respective leagues. Although, the men’s 4th XI and women’s 7th XI are giving them a run for their money with strong second places.
At the other end of the tables, the women’s 5th XI, men’s 5th XI and men’s 6th XI all have a bit of work to do in the second half of the season to pull away from the danger zone.
The men’s Veterans’ XI are in a comfortable mid-table position, while the Evergreens’ 8th place is perhaps of less importance than the fact that they’ve only played three games this season!
Our Junior Section should not be forgotten either. It’s still early days in their competitions but Sunday morning coaching sessions continue to thrive and we haven’t lost any sessions to the weather!
OFF THE PITCH
We have enjoyed two very successful and profitable social events, with the Beer Festival raising almost £1,500 and the Whisky Tasting more than £700. A huge thank you to all the organisers, helpers and attendees that helped make both those events so enjoyable. There are a number of other events planned this year from our hard-working social committee so please make every effort to support them, either through offers of help or by attending the events. Look out for news on posters and social media.
We have a very important vacancy to fill – that of Membership Secretary. Most of the hard work this season is over, so it’s a good time for someone else to get involved. This is a vital role for the club because it ensures that everybody is formally registered and our largest source of funds is collected. No specific hockey knowledge or experience is required. All we need is someone who is well-organised, willing to give up some of their time and keen to make a meaningful contribution to the club. Please speak to one of the Management Committee if you would like to know more.
It is with some regret that I have to mention a matter of some concern to the Management Committee and a large number of our members. You may recall that I posted an early-season message about disciplinary matters. Sadly, a minority of individuals have failed to heed the warnings and, so far this season, it shames me to admit that Chelmsford HC has amassed FOUR red cards for on-field transgressions. In over forty years playing for the club I can’t remember four red cards in a season, let alone before Christmas.
Your Management Committee takes this matter very seriously and wants to remind all members that we operate under the England Hockey “Respect” Code of Ethics and Behaviour, which covers everybody associated with the game, from players and officials to spectators and parents. Much of it is common sense and basic good manners, but I urge you all to familiarise yourself with the code and to abide by it to ensure the game can continue to be enjoyed by all. Your Management Committee will consider further action against individuals if there are any more incidents this season.
While we’re on the subject of discipline, it’s not just a problem for our club. There was an unsavoury incident recently where a junior umpire was verbally abused by the coach of a visiting junior team. The matter has been brought to the attention of both the club involved and England Hockey, and is currently being progressed through formal channels. We want to reassure all players, officials, volunteers and parents that Chelmsford HC will not tolerate this type of behaviour under any circumstances.
Finally, and on a happier note, I wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Successful New Year!
Chairman, Chelmsford HC