A load of crap; that was Burridge midfielder Kristian Hewitt's frank assessment of Hedge-End's performance in a pre-season fixture with their veteran eleven at the Norman Rodaway last Saturday afternoon. Hewitt left the match after twenty minutes, a damning indictment on any game, until taking into consideration just how short a walk it is from the Rodaway to Hewitt's house, and that playing veteran sides, if my experiences are anything to go by, can be notoriously difficult.
The minimum eligible age for veteran football is 35, although veteran players are often far older. They have nothing to lose in pre-season games against younger opposition, who often find themselves trying too hard to force the game, as I have experienced to my cost after sulking off to the dressing-rooms after bring trounced 4-0 by Aerostructure vets last year.
Former Burridge striker Bryn Schwodler, now at Hedge-End, agreed that Saturday's game was rubbish. Hedge-End will no doubt produce a far better performance more in keeping with their 2-0 win over Hampshire Premier League side Hamble Club last night, when they play us on August 11th.
Last night was our final training session before a series of pre-season games on Saturdays and Wednesdays throughout August. Reaction to training has been positive, overcoming any misgivings that most footballers at this level of the game tend to have regarding anything that involves strenuous exercise.
Burridge manager Paul Dyke has taken all the sessions, last night's being slightly less hard going with Saturday's first pre-season game in mind, and although no two sessions have been the same, all have maintained a familiar theme throughout, which has yet to fail in leaving players feeling totally bollocksed. None more so than Sam Hewitt, who could be seen laid flat on his back during yesterday's end of session match.
Paul Dyke raised Hewitt's leg and pushed down firmly on the sole of his Nike cleat in an effort to relieve the cramp in Hewitt's calf. This continued for five minutes without success, the only blip on what's been an encouraging start to pre-season.
Sam Hewitt, this time being relieved by his brother Kristian, seems to have a history of cramping up, which poses the question - what gives with this kid?