So having dodged their way out of playing our 2XI twice in BUCs for reasons still unknown, Coventry’s trap was set. They lay in wait like an unknown shark, lurking there amongst the other debris that litter the ‘pitch’ at their home ground. The element of surprise, it seemed, was theirs.

Leading up to Super Saturday, Warwick 1s were restless: what was Cov’s secret weapon that they have tried so desperately to conceal? Not doing all that well in their own league, Warwick were nervous at the thought of facing off against this unknown entity for the biggest match of the University calendar.

It was decided therefore, that we would need to draft in the big-guns of the Warwick hockey scene, who were worldly-wise and experienced in dealings with The Poly: The Leavers. So with this elite bunch on the team sheet, the Warwick 1s were buoyed slightly: could this be the edge they need?

1700 hours: The changing rooms. Rachel as ever in her puffer with the speakers in tow, lit-up the room with some deep house funk to get the squad in the zone. War-paint was adorned to highlight the cheekbones, and headbands were donned, despite making the team look like root vegetables. All in all though, Warwick 1s looked ready to play - even Elsa, despite those astros.

Cov decided to show up halfway through Warwick’s warm-up, trickling onto their pitch looking very much like we imagine them to in a library: confused and slightly lonely. Perhaps though, they were merely confident. Warwick managed to remain calm however, and with Freddie’s resounding cry of 1-2-WARWICK, they slid in to formation.

1800 hours: Push back. It became apparent rather quickly that: 1. The Umpires has been to the Nunes school of Umpiring, 2. Janet was going to get sent off and 3. The crowd would be amazing. Coventry were a demanding, physical team who did put Warwick under a lot of pressure in the first 20, but Warwick were ahead as the half concluded with the first of three goals from Joakhill in a tantalising 1-0 lead by Warwick, summarised by James Morrison (and best pal Ian) on the side-line: “Dece.” And he was right, Warwick were fighting well. However a 1-0 lead can quickly change, and with Coventry actually playing well, the pressure was on. The shark-eyes of Cov were looking hungry at the glimmer of hope they could see…

After halftime however, Warwick showed no mercy. The real Shoeing began as it turned out, Cov’s surprise was to surprise us all and actually be unsurprisingly average. They began to crumble before our eyes as Joakhill slotted two more unbelievable goals past them, followed by a decider from Bean. Warwick 1s had played fundamentally good hockey, as their passes from stick-to-stick slowly and mercilessly unpicked the tough Coventry squad, all topped off by amazing, quick subs from the Leavers whose fresh legs resulted in several penalty corners. Their composure in their attacking half had paid-off, to result in a 4-0 demolishing and genuinely excellent play by every single Warwick player against a resilient Coventry team.

All in all, Varsity was a highlight in the Warwick 1s otherwise difficult season. Cov can take some pride in the fact that they are winning the incredibly difficult and highly contested 3A BUCs league, but Varsity for them, was perhaps a step too far.

Until next year!

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