11 Jan – YCAC Gents XV 53, Asahi Shimbun 17

The day began inauspiciously as five members of the team pulled out before kick-off with Roppongi flu. No such influenza problems for Asahi Shimbun who fielded a side that had required no oxygen for decades during their cryogenically-induced torpor. Rumour had it that Doddy was one part of a father-son combo on the pitch that day. On-lookers could be forgiven for thinking that Doddy was the son of one of the Asahi Shimbun octogenarians : so sprightly was he in comparison. Within minutes, YCAC were 24-0 ahead. Graham “Frenchie” Creighton, Al “music and weed is all I need” Ferris and Chris “who needs a kicking tee” Osborn scored 5 tries between them.
Now those Brits, Aussies and Kiwis amongst you who see reports of the goings on in Iraq, will wonder how it comes to pass that American soldiers can gun down fat,old, defenceless grannies on the pretext that they are a potential terrorist threat. Well, exhibiting all the caution of a US marine in Iraq, to his eternal shame Captain Scottie gave the instruction to kick a penalty against the fat, old, defenceless grandads to put YCAC 27-0 up.
At this point, half of the grandads left the field to be replaced by their grandsons. Suddenly we were in a decent game. Kieron, Blake and a swallow-diving, willowy and athletic winger-act-a-like named Tom Jones crossed for scores in response to three tries from Asahi Shimbun. As ever, Saito-san refereed a blinder ; well, blind something anyway.
But joy of joys, after the game we discovered why the grandads had been playing. They paid for food, they paid for beer and they gave us presents ; lots of presents. One present for our best player, one for our oldest player, one for our youngest player and one for our greediest player. All in all, a wonderful day. The only downer was that Asahi Shimbun won the drinking game. But if we will select an American as our representative what can we expect.
As a nice post-script, Doddy and his son (who actually is a very good player, doesn’t cheat and plays the game from an on-side position : are you sure he is your son Doddy?) had a drinking match. Doddy won to prove he is still the Daddy.
Tries : Graham Creighton (2), Chris Osborne (2), Al Ferris, Kieron Dwyer, Blake Harrop, Tom Jones. Penalty: Chris Osborn (1). Conversions : Chris Osborne (5)

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