Perfect weather greeted the jolly band of Harriers who made their way to Wells, for the annual beach training day.
Coaches Russ Prosser and Ken Maggs arrived early to claim the usual spot on the beach, and plan the day’s proceedings for the eager athletes.
The training contained the usual mixture of mind bogglingly exhausting speed work and mind bogglingly difficult reps up a near vertical sand dune carefully selected by the coaches. Slackers were not tolerated, and 1050 press up punishments were meted out with glee (though very few took any notice.)
Sean Beard and Howard Piccaver were excused for arriving late as, inspired by the alpine sections of the Tour de France, they had decided to cycle all the way from Peterborough. The less robust (or more intelligent) folk were soaking up the sun, and indulging in traditional seaside activities, such as burying Amelia Morgan in the sand, and turning purple in the face blowing up beach balls that came straight back down again!
Once the training was over an afternoon of relaxation was enjoyed by all, and some even took a paddle in the sea after a one mile stroll to the far away shore.
Then it was time for the real highlight of the day rounders.
Russ took charge organising the teams for the traditional Cambridgeshire v Lincolnshire fixture and it was evident that Lincolnshire had the more athletic looking team. The Cambridgeshire hopes were resting on the form of Timothy Hunt and his son Samuel who had been regaling anyone willing to listen with stories of their rounders expertise, and past triumphs. Sadly (due to an appointment) the highly skilled family double act slipped away just before the game was due to commence.
Winning the toss and batting first Lincolnshire accumulated a total of 11 rounders thanks to some lusty hitting from team members old and young. Cambridgeshire batted well and scored 9 rounders according to Russ (the Lincolnshire captain and match organiser) so the victors were announced as the Lincolnshire team.
The match featured the usual mix of outstanding fielding and abject butterfingeredness. Men of the match awards, kindly donated by Cat and Alex, were presented to Angus Bowling of Lincolnshire and Lucas Oakley of Cambridgeshire. Two youngsters who appear to have a bright rounders career ahead, and whose ability to ‘walk the walk’ and ‘talk the talk’ should serve as a lesson to the male members of the family Hunt.
After this, a tired and bedraggled group of Harriers made their way back from the beach to the town for the traditional, and highly anticipated fish and chips. These were consumed with relish (as well as salt and vinegar.)
Thanks to the coaches and everyone who came for making it such a enjoyable day. It was good to see a group ranging from children, right through to pensioners having such a great time together.