Don’t forget it’s our Bastille Day bash for members this Saturday. Sadly we can’t do a BBQ but we’ve got a fabulous spread prepared so you won’t go hungry.
If you haven’t already sorted out your French sartorial elegance now is the time to do it. None of our fancy dress truly depicts that at the time of the French Revolution (except one of my suits in the wardrobe). It’s more a re-run of “Allo Allo” so you get the picture.
We will be doing the usual skill (or in my case the lack of) shot competition so those gearing up for La British Open will get a chance to practise under pressure conditions.
There will also be some social melee games and also a little quiz to see who has read and digested the new rules of petanque brought out in January 2017.
Sorry folks but our plans to have a BBQ during our Bastille Day celebrations have been scuppered by Kirklees Council. All Public parks and grounds have been banned from such actions that might risk starting a fire amongst the very dry grass and plants etc.
I’m assured it has nothing to do with the French being upset with us over Brexit or our cunning plan to guillotine their football team on Bastille Day. We will provide a replacement form of nosh but sadly it won’t be hot.
Perhaps we can use the Firth Park trees for salad instead of firewood for a BBQ.
Please note that we will be holding our charity quiz on Friday 22 February 2019 at the usual venue Hanging Heaton Golf Club. Please spread the word when you are visiting other clubs as we have had lots of support in the past from both Mirfield and Huddersfield. Thank you.
The glorious sunshine brought out another record turnout of 44 members for our June month end melee. Good news unless your the one typing in everyones scores and correcting numerous arithmetical errors and suspect score entries.
However, here we are after 2 hours of finger numbness and square eyes from the screen with the final results. There were seven members who enjoyed the ultimate goal of three wins from three games. Points difference, therefore sorted out the final positions and who got the points. Sharing third place, and scoring five points each were Cath Clegg and Kath Westley with 3 wins and plus 20 points. Just one point better off was Ken Hutchinson with 3 wins and plus 21 points. However, our June champion was Janet Spencer with 3 wins and plus 32 points. Janet is now well clear in the table after recording her third month end victory. Well done indeed.
Full results and the current points table are to be seen in the RESULTS PAGE of the blog.
July is a very busy month for the club.
July the 14th we have our annual celebration of Bastille Day. Not quite sure why we celebrate such anarchy but it’s a good enough reason to dress up in weird French type gear and smell of onions. A BBQ soon masks the smell of the onions. For those who will be attending for the first time, hooped T-shirts, berets, handlebar moustaches, and strings of onions around the neck are usual garb. Thats the guys anyway. Ladies use your imagination but If you were a fan of “Allo Allo” you will get the gist of it. We will play some Petanque skills games based on shooting and pointing. There may even be a prize. After the “barby” we can have some social melee games. If anyone has French roots and is a bit upset by our irreverence to the French we will have a guillotine ready to cut short your suffering. We will probably do a little fund raising for our chosen charity, “Forget me Not”. IF YOU ARE COMING AND WANT BBQ FOOD PLEASE MAKE SURE YOUR NAME IS ON OUR LIST IN THE CLUBHOUSE SO THAT WE CAN ESTIMATE FOOD REQUIREMENTS.
JULY 21st and 22nd is our weekend La British Open competition. The entry list of teams includes many of the nations top players. All from West Yorkshire of course plus teams from Belgium, France, Mongolia, Scotland and around England will also be taking part. I’m afraid club social play will be limited to 11am finish on the Saturday but you are welcome to stay or return Saturday evening to join in social play and perhaps a game with some of the superstars. It should be a great competition with some good players on view. Saturday will be qualifying games and an evening shooting competition while Sunday will see the real battles develop for the title of La British Open Champions.
If there is one thing you learn from playing Petanque it’s that if something could happen in a game then it almost certainly will. Our West Yorkshire League match today was our last of the season while Leeds still have one more to play next week. For us the maths was simple. If we could win 4-1 then our lead at the top of the league would be too great for Leeds to overhaul in their last fixture. If we won 3-2 then Leeds could overhaul us by winning 4-1 in their last game. Bearing in mind we lost 1-4 away at Leeds either winning scoreline was going to be tough to achieve. We started the triples full of hope and it seemed just a matter of minutes before the first shock occurred. Roger F, Clive McC and Colin C were sat watching us. Playing a formidable Leeds trio of Sam, Steve and Nestor it took just three ends to record a magnificent 13-0 victory. No disrespect lads but you would have got very goods odds for predicting that brilliant result. Well done indeed. Alma J, Ian F and Clive W took part in a relatively less exciting match but it was full of good shooting and pointing and we eventually ran out 13-9 winners. So far so good but then in the pairs Roger and Colin obviously hadn’t warmed up in their triples and had fired Sam into action. Leeds hit back with a 13-4 victory to turn up the pressure on our team. Alma and I played pretty well to reach a 12-4 lead and yes you’ve guessed it. The last point became incredibly difficult to get. At 12-10 we finally managed to edge home. The lead was now 3-1 and the final match was still nowhere near crunch time. Ian Fitton and Clive McCulloch were holding there own against Nestor and Steve at 7 across. Every end was close and only ones or twos being scored. First one pair edged ahead then the other. Inevitably 12-12 was reached with Leeds holding the coche. After four boules we had a boule nestling against the coche. Nestor shot out the coche with a brilliant shot. Dead end. The final end was one of the most dramatic ends ever seen. Both teams had boules close and were nudged out as “game on the ground” passed from one team to the other. One boule each and Leeds held the point but Clive McCulloch pointed in brilliantly to nudge them out and hold the point. Poor Nestor attempted to point in and push a Leeds boule in but fortunately for us he failed by a couple of inches. The release of tension around the watching crowd was amazing. Leeds are to be thanked for such a great game full of good sportsmanship as well as excellent play but at the end of a nerve racking match we had the result we desperately hoped for. A 4-1 win. A big thank you and congratulations to all of the 12 Heckmondwike members who have contributed to a successful season.
A great big thankyou to the two fine artistes who turned out today to rub down and paint the four remaining benches at our terrain. Well done Roger and Clive. They are so skilful that they put more paint on the benches than on themselves. A skill I have yet to perfect. Thanks also to the six strong lads in the park who were on hand to lift our two artists up from the ground and back on their feet after they’d finished the underside of the last bench.
Just a coincidence perhaps but our best turnout of members this year was again for the Ladies versus Gents fixture. Today 44 members arrived wearing war paint for our second such game of 2018. Conveniently there were 22 ladies and 22 gents. Had we (me) counted correctly to start with we could have played 11 pairs of each sex but because we had already drawn teams believing there to be only 21 men we had 10 teams each of which there were two triples teams in each camp. I guess I was the man who was unsure of whether I was there or not. Despite the final result suggesting otherwise a vast majority of the 30 games were very closely fought with the loser in a third of them scoring 11 or 12 points. However, I soften the blow no longer. The gents won for the third time in a row. The score was 21 games (plus 84 points) to the gents and 9 wins (minus 84 points) to the ladies. Of course our modesty forbids photos of the gents parading the trophy through the streets of Heckmondwike. Special mention for Ladies pair Doreen Hutchinson and Doreen Hunter who recorded three wins out of three games. Well done to you both. Three gents teams recorded three from three. Roy Henstock with Stuart Bolton, Ian Fitton with Alan Norfolk and by some weird twist of fate Kevin Hepworth, Trevor May and myself were our heroes in chief. An excellent day of Petanque played in great spirit and favoured by dry, if a little cool, weather. To be certain the Ladies will be looking for revenge next time.