World Masters Games Auckland New Zealand

British Army Masters Team World Masters Games Apr 17 – Auckland, New Zealand

22 Apr 17

British Army v Leichardt Tigers (Aus)

Our opening fixture of the competition came only 24hrs after arriving in NZ however; receiving the knowledge that each game was only 2 half’s of 30mins was a pleasant bonus. The game began at a frantic pace and we initially struggled to adapt to the environment as well as each other. Once the game had settled we began to exert our influence and took the lead after 25mins through Cpl Kev Rookes RLC. After dominating the second half the game was eventually sealed in the 59th minute when once again Rookes was on hand to score his and the teams second goal.

Result

British Army 2 v 0 Leichardt Tigers (Aus)

Team

Dean, Rizza ( c), Storrie, Jordan, Mavin (Hutchinson 45min), Rookes, G Griffin (Stubbs 55min), Nicholson, A Griffin (Adamson 50min), Spruce (Christian 55min), Brough (Biggs 40min)

Not used: Hayes, Black

24 Apr 17

British Army v Central United (NZ)

Our second fixture turned out to be our most frustrating. Playing against a team with International experience we expected a thorough test however; Central Utd decided to sit and allow us to dictate the game and dominate possession throughout. After a goalless first 30mins the Army eventually took the lead on 35min through Cpl Kev Rookes RLC. This had an effect on the Central team who then had to chase the game and they were unfortunate on a couple of occasions. Any doubts the Army had about the outcome of the game were dispelled when in the final minute WO2 Maik Biggs RLC scored the decisive second goal.

Result

British Army 2 v 0 Central United (NZ)

Team

Hayes, Rizza ( c), Storrie, Jordan (Stubbs 52min), Mavin (A Griffin 52min), Hutchinson (Hagan 50min), Rookes (Adamson 52min), G Griffin, Nicholson (Black 50min), Spruce (Brough 35min), Biggs

Not used: Dean, Christian

25 Apr 17

British Army v Rangitoto (NZ)

With only 24hrs rest our third fixture was expected to be tough against an unbeaten Rangitoto side. The game was dominated in midfield and there were limited opportunities for either side in the opening 30mins. After the break the Army began to get the upper hand and took the lead on 40mins through Cpl Rob Storrie RE. This turned out to be the winning goal as both teams were guilty of lacking any real quality in the final third and  neither could take advantage of some excellent build up play.

Result

British Army 1 v 0 Rangitoto (NZ)

Team

Dean, Rizza ( c), Storrie, Jordan, Mavin (A Griffin 45min), Rookes, G Griffin, Nicholson, Spruce, Brough (Adamson 50min), Biggs (Christian 52min)

Not used: Hayes, Stubbs, Black, Hagan, Hutchinson

27 Apr 17

British Army v Olympic Club (USA)

The fourth game brought about our first defeat against a dominate American team; Olympic Club. Being in a different category the Americans were a younger side and the quality of the team, with 4 players having played in the MLS, was apparent from the onset however; the Army dealt with their threats for the opening 30mins and went in at half time 0-0. The second half saw the Americans dominate possession again and with the Army tiring they took the lead and held out to secure the 3 points.

Result

British Army 0 v 1 Olympic Club (USA)

Team

Dean, Rizza ( c), Storrie, Jordan, Mavin (A Griffin 50min), Rookes, Adamson (Black 45min), Nicholson, Spruce, Brough (Hutchinson 40min), Biggs (Christian 55min)

Not used: Hayes, Stubbs, Hagan,

28 Apr 17

British Army v Braveheart (NZ)

The Army bounced back immediately after losing the previous game against another stubborn local side. Changes were enforced in this game with the competition now beginning to take its toll on the players but those coming in acquitted themselves well and demonstrated the strength in depth the squad had. The first half was dominated by the Army without scoring however; the deadlock was broken in the 50min by Sgt Nick Brough RLC after good work from WO2 Maik Biggs RLC. Immediately after the opening goal the second arrived; this time Brough was the provider for SSgt David Mavin REME to double the advantage. This was how the game finished but at a cost of another injured player to add to the list!

Result

British Army 2 v 0 Braveheart (NZ)

Team

Hayes, Rizza ( c), Storrie, Hutchinson (Stubbs 53min), A Griffin (Mavin 10min), Rookes, Adamson, Nicholson (Black 53min), Spruce (Birchnall 53min), Biggs (Hagan 53min), Christian (Brough 35min)

Not used: Dean

29 Apr 17

British Army v New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF)

The final league game and Age Category Gold Medal match was against our NZ counterparts. With a sizable and excited crowd the game began with the Army in the ascendancy from the onset. The NZDF could not cope with our passing game when in possession and high pressing when out of possession and it was no surprise when we took the lead through Sgt Nick Brough RLC on 15mins. The lead was increased with two quick-fire goals from Cpl Rob Storrie RE making the HT score 3-0 to the Army. There was no let up for the Kiwi’s after the break and further goals from WO2 Maik Biggs RLC, SSgt Gary Adamson RLC and Capt Matt Spruce RAMC kept the Army in complete control. After a few changes (including an appearance for Col Andy Phillips) the NZDF managed to score a consolation in the last minute to give the home crowd something to cheer about however; the Army had secured their Gold Medal.

Result

British Army 6 v 1 New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF)

Team

Dean (Hayes 43min), Rizza ( c) (Nicholson 35min), Jordan (Stubbs 40min), Hutchinson, Mavin (Hagan 44min), Rookes (Col Phillips 45min), Adamson (Christian 44min), Storrie, Spruce, Biggs (R Bell 44min), Brough (Black 30min)

Not used: N/A

30 Apr 17

British Army v Olympic Club (USA)

The final football game of the WMG was between the two top sides from the league format, The British Army and Olympic Club and was played in the impressive QBE Stadium. With no medal at stake this gave the Army the opportunity to reverse their only loss in the competition. Unfortunately, this seemed to be ‘one game to far’ and with so many injuries the remaining Army players were outplayed by our American opponents. With a younger side and with more players at their disposal they took control from the start and by half-time had a 2-0 lead. The Army rallied at the beginning of the second-half but couldn’t create any real clear cut opportunities; Olympic Club then scored two quick goals to eventually run out 4-0 winners.

Result

British Army 0 v 4 Olympic Club (USA)

Team

Dean, Rizza ( c), Jordan, Hutchinson (Birchnall 50min), Brough (Stubbs 17min), Mavin (Christian 45min), Rookes (Hagan 52min), Nicholson (Adamson 16min), Storrie, Spruce, Biggs

Not used: Black

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