Match Reports - April 9, 2011

State League

State League Mens and Womens games were played at Albert Park on both the grass field and the synthetic ground.

This author departed Melbourne in sunny and warm conditions on Saturday morning with the car thermometer reading a balmy 27 degrees. Shorts and T shirts were the order of the day.

However, as the journey progressed over the next 3 hours, the clouds and rain appeared and the thermometer dropped to 15 degrees. On went the long pants and the jumpers and coats. By the time we reached the playing field in Warrnambool there was a shivering mass of spectators huddling under the Warrnambool Hockey Club verandah.

However, the weather did not deter the enthusiasm of the players and spectators. And by the time the Camberwell game against Surrey began, the sun had appeared.

Players found the synthetic ground a challenge, but there were no complaints about holes or bumps.

The game was the usual feisty event against Surrey, with the ball moving up and down the field. Sadly, in the first few minutes Cocky went down with an ankle injury.

Surrey were always going to be a formidable foe and managed to out-score Camberwell, with the final score being 16 - 6. All Camberwell's scoring opportunities came in the first and final quarter. The two Matt Kerrs were deemed to be best on ground with the referees also noticing Danny Meehan.

However, the game was played in true sporting style, with not one foul for the entire game.

The new Camberwell state-of-the-art scorer's clock, timer and bell worked fantastically.

State League, second report

Despite the loss and the apparent one sided affair, it was a Kerr day out. Matty Jnr (David) Kerr dominated from the first face off and owned the ground between restraining lines. It was a one man show that confirms the Camberwell Community’s belief that this man, Jnr can lead Camberwell to its first State League Premiership.

Jnr’s performance was only over shadowed by Clinton Lander (Cocky’s) early exit from the game, that left many stunned, shocked and questioning whether Camberwell could win a game without the man who has for the last decade, led Camberwell in all aspects of its life, on and off the field.

In what seemed nothing more than an innocuous hit by a team mate (who will remain nameless), none the less, the 100 kilo frame of Cocky hit the rain soaked astro turf of Warrnambool (one questions Lacrosse Victoria’s decision) and so did Camberwell’s hopes of State League final glory for season 2011.

But that was not the story of the day; it was about the coming of age of Matty Kerr Jnr.

Many concerned individuals within the Camberwell community had expressed their concern about the pressure (burden in many eyes) placed on this man (‘the great hope’), but rest assured, this boy came of age on this wet wind soaked afternoon. This boy, now a man, is worthy of his reputation as he has performed in Australia’s hardest league.

Matty Kerr’s Jnr’s performance was extraordinary but he was assisted by the always reliable defensive midfielders Simon Baker (Assistant Coach and Assistant Captain) and Alistair Gloutnay (Captain). Naming these two in leadership  roles, is finally some recognition that for the last decade Camberwell’s drive and leadership has come from the back line which has been the back bone of a club that has struggled to reach its potential.

Oliver Casey a four year fixture of Camberwell’s midfield and face off found his feet and was a superb support to the main show of Matty Kerr Jnr. But in an intentional effort not to pull any punches, Olie’s performance only came about as a result of Paul (Badger) omission due to a baby (congratulations to all involved, baby and mother doing well). For all wishing Camberwell success in the future, we hope that for Badger to get back into the team.

Travis Gathercole (Coach) played a team oriented role in the forward line and his aspirational foresight was only failed by his inability in the preseason to improve his player’s ball skills. One was left walking away from the game questioning if ten of the starting sixteen players could catch and throw (which is an insult to the man who recruited all, Doug Fox).

So is Camberwell going to the moon as promised by the President in 2010, only time will tell, but let’s hope that Cocky returns quickly and Mat Kerr Jnr can maintain the courage, desire and form for the entire season.