9 Mar 2008 – YCAC Gents vs All France

YCAC Gents 50, All France 0
Gents Match Report – Joe Fisher
Photographer – Kyoko Obayashi

Tries: Arnaud Terrien (2), Simon Ryan, Dean Stallard, Fraser Jamieson (2), Ben Duncan, Sias Potgieter
Cons: Ben Duncan (5)

Spring is definitely coming to Japan. After a cold, barren winter the days are finally getting warmer, cherry blossoms are starting to bloom and new life is trying to burst through. In an excellent example of the final point Masa ‘Quantity not Quality’ Nozaki lived up to his name and brought along not one, but three, young Japanese ladies to the game. Masa does have a long history of ‘biting off more than he can chew’ (for further evidence of this please consult the Ladies Hockey Captain), but even for him this was a truly spectacular effort.

Despite the good mood created by Masa it was a nervous build-up to the game for YCAC as we were missing our star Prop, Dean ‘Fish’ Stallard. Fears mounted as it was revealed that Dean had been out drinking the previous night with Simon ‘The Legend of Yamate’ Ryan and his two sidekicks Fraser ‘Buffalo Butt’ Jamieson and Jason ‘Its’ Dunn. Despite the fact that all three of these club stalwarts had ample reason to ‘tie one on’ the previous night* they all made it on time and it was the young fella who grossly overslept. Luckily, Stallard’s first move upon waking at 1 pm (for a 2 pm K.O.) was to put a call through to Steve ‘The Vicar’ Lewis. Great club man that he is, upon getting Dean’s call The Vicar promptly turned his brand new Jaguar around and went and picked him up. They eventually made it to the ground a good 5 minutes before kick-off.

When the game did actually kick off YCAC were facing an All France side that looked more French than they have in a long time – resplendent in their black Peugeot-sponsored jerseys with pink numbering the All France side even managed to get a few look-alikes in their team. Matthieu Vignaud looked and played like a young Fabian Pelous, halfback and captain Laurent bears a decent resemblance to Cristophe Dominici and there was a dead ringer for Sebastian Chabal in the pack. Unfortunately, like the French national team, All France’s performances tend to vary greatly from match to match and yesterday was not one of their better days. In fact, the only Frenchman to score (on the field) yesterday was in YCAC colours – Arnaud ‘Mature’ Terrien, who bagged a good winger’s double. Knowing Arnaud it’s a good bet that the quiet Frenchie added to that tally off the field yesterday as well!

In terms of the rest of the scoring, Dean managed to shake off his raging hangover and dot down for his first try for YCAC. The quickness with which young Stallard has assimilated himself into the club’s culture was shown by his jubilant cry of “No bagel for me!” immediately following his score. Sias ‘The Manchild’ Potgieter also managed to get himself on the scoreboard and was indeed voted ‘Player of the Day’ by the oppo. However, the day really belonged to YCAC’s ‘old boys’. All France are clearly amused by longevity of some of the YCAC team. The report on their last match against us describes our backline defence as “geriatric” and the call of “I’ll take the gray-haired one” was heard from their backline during the match. (Which actually prompted our backline to seek clarification – Were they talking about Simon, Fraser, or Ben ‘Silver Fox’ Duncan?) Despite such heckling, it was the “geriatrics” who had the last laugh though with Simon and Ben both dotting down (Ben running untouched from half-way) and Fraser continuing his fine form of late by getting a double. (There have actually been complaints about Fraser continually being made fun of in match reports – he was recently described as “25 stone pregnant hippopotamus” – but these barbs only seem to be inspiring the big man to greater and greater performances. As such, keep it up Fat Arse!)

Turning back to the off-field action, Masa was carefully priming the maternal instincts of his three lady friends by getting them to look after Erich Friess’ twin daughters. We were aiming to slip ‘Caviar’ Ken Noguchi in there with the toddlers and hope that the girls wouldn’t notice but, once again, Ken got stage-fright when it came to taking the plunge. Hopes then lay with YCAC’s quartet of twenty-somethings Dean, Joe ‘Altar Boy’ Fisher, Willie ‘Mini Me’ Lapthorn and Adam ‘B&D’ Kennedy. However, looks can sometimes be deceiving and with Dean married, Joe engaged and Willie focusing on importing coal to Newcastle, the only single man in this group was Adam. Unfortunately, despite the cognomen ‘B&D’ he actually proved remarkably shy around the young women. As such, Masa had no choice but to squeeze all three of them back into his yellow two-seater sports car for a long, lonely ride back to Tokyo. Simon and Fraser were suitably disgusted.

Joe Fisher

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