In the past few weeks I have had my fair share of High Intensity (HI) training. I don’t mean High Intensity fitness. I mean High Intensity workload!
Two sets of Sundays in this post and the first one was eager anticipation given that I had been on a break.
It was a lot of fun but I had a lot of trouble practicing the new execution of the direct free kick signal. The problem is that both hands are raised from normal position to something different so sometimes I criss-cross and forget which hand to point with and which hand needs to point to the ground in the heat of the moment. Also a small pause between the signal and stepping onto the court to administer the restart that players may have found slightly difficult to deal with.
I’ve been burning through Team Management 101 (my own experience) because it has been quite the mission. All the joy is in the facilitation of the game and watching the enjoyment of the players. No money, cash incentive or any tangible perks. Being a team manager is interesting. Especially the sacrifices of those early morning trainings where the sun has barely risen when I step out.
The final gameday for my Futsal team’s (the one I play on) regular season arrived and I had missed the previous one but I hadn’t had exercise for a week having been busy with work for a while. I was really looking forward to this skirmish. I was wearing track pants this time and a small sweatband high on my forearm. I was eager to put more work into practice.
Saturday afternoon as usual and we weren’t expecting a full squad. Our opponents had lost almost every one of their regular season games so it was a positive going into it but not something to take lightly. I was slightly late to arrive but kick-off was a few minutes late. I had a quick breakfast of cereal 20 minutes earlier and started my brisk walk to the court.
As I entered the gym, I was slightly nervous the game had started; I was the primary goalkeeper. It hadn’t and my four teammates turned around to cheer that I had arrived. One of the few pleasures/exclusive moments of being a goalkeeper. I quickly took off my winter gear and changed from my outdoor shoes to my Futsal boots. I didn’t need to get warmed up because the brisk walk did it all. I was far from cold. In fact the day was fairly warm.
The trackpants really worked since I didn’t have any bruises or scrapes but then again I didn’t have any major threats on goal. The first 10 minutes of the game were nervy as the opposing team attacked hard and found the net twice to my right side but we replied after each goal before completing the final chapter in the game and sealing a decisive victory.
The best part of the game had yet to come. My team was leading 10-2. We were awarded a kick-in on the right wing of the defending half. One of the players played the ball to me and an attacker started to move towards me from 10 yards away. He was only 6 yards when the ball had reached me and I kicked the ball at the bottom right which sent it up and spinning. After the shot recoil I turned slightly to move back to protect the face of goal. The ball had gone quite high and almost in slow-motion bounced a yard in front of the opposing goal and the opposing goalkeeper. The spin caught him off-guard and a light fumble left the ball in the back of the net. It certainly didn’t feel like a goal worth a celebrating but I did raise my hands in triumph as my teammates couldn’t help but laugh out loud that everyone had gotten on the scoresheet.
I later told my roommates that I had scored a goal and they were impressed given that I was the goalkeeper in my own half!
Having had a week of madness in both work and team management, the weekend was for some referee mentoring and development as I chatted with over a dozen referees to prepare the league for long-term sustainability and for whoever is to take over.
No running this past week but will need to get back to it soon. Here’s a shot from the last time I went from the last blog post.
Warm spell this week but the weather forecast is about to dip again. Here’s the view outside.
Off to early morning team training now.