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We are one of the longest established hockey clubs in the city of Leeds and have a brand new state of the art pitch along with recent recognition of our success:

  1. Awards – click here for club and individual awards
    • 2016 Investec Womens Team of the year
    • 2016 Mens Most Improved Club of the Year
    • 2016 Pam Hardaker recognised as the Participation Coach of the Year
  2. Facilities – new astroturf and lights, great bar and top facilities all on one site
  3. Teams – we cater for anyone and everyone of all abilities with a well designed coaching progamme to support a well run and proven junior academy with strong school links
  4. Reputation – one of the oldest, friendliest and most sociable clubs in the county with attractive membership rates

Please click here to get in touch

Didsbury Greys- 5 Leeds Adel- 5

Adel hit the road and travelled across the top for the first of several trips to Manchester this season, Didsbury Greys providing the opposition. The usual suspects were joined by a few notable new additions who made their league debut. Anna Shields, one of Adel’s home grown talents was joined in her debut by Abbie Taylor, formally of Kendal and our league winning 3rd XI and finally Izzi Pugh, who joins us from Leeds Uni.

The team have been looking forward to the challenge of the league above ever since securing promotion with a final whistle short corner back in April. Since then Adel have won a further two games against Lindum and Ben Rhydding with final whistle short corners, the team can only imagine the heartache of such denial…

Whilst Adel had a busy preseason to prepare for the league, Greys started the brighter of the teams and despite the best efforts of McCall in goal to keep the score deadlocked, they opened their account for the day with an early penalty corner conversion. The pressure continued to mount, relief for the defence was minimal however the game took a shock turn with a solo goal from Bickley, picking the ball up on the left wing, beating one defender, then another before calmly rounding the keeper and passing the ball in to the awaiting goal. Exchanges from here were much more even, Smith, Bickley and Wright having more success on the wings, Love, Hairsine and Shields pushing up the pitch to offer deeper wide options to the attack. Greys grabbed another and this was quickly followed with an equaliser from Adel, a successful move down the right wing, finished at the back post by Jones. An added bonus saw a Greys player binned for arguing something that didn’t happen, Greys now unsettled were caught again by Bickley carving in from the left wing, rounding players with ease, with just the keeper to beat, a horrendous and desperate tackle cut her in half, thankfully not injured.  With the appropriate card issued and penalty stroke awarded, K.Blyth converted with a no nonsense approach and Adel went into the break with a 3-2 lead.

The 2nd half started with a little more calm, Hesselwood, Pugh and Taylor much more settled at the back and taking control of defence. The spaces now opening in midfield and allowing sisters Blyth to really find some speed and create danger in front of the opposition goal supporting by the ever trusty Gibson mopping up behind them and distributing the ball out of defence. Goal four rattled the backboard, a slightly wayward penalty corner fired into the area from Gibson, Hesselwood’s soft and gentle hand applying the deflection past the static keeper. Some may have believe this game was nearly settled, however Greys responded with a couple of their own. 4-4 with ten minutes to go. The frantic manner had now returned and chances were quickly exchanged, McCall making several top class saves to show her class. Adel again grabbed the lead, K.Blyth adding her 2nd with what surely would be the winner. Adel pushed forward again, A.Blyth dodging tackles and even a right hook as she carried the ball forward, another penalty corner awarded. Adel were sure they had won it with another deflection from Hesselwood, this time the ‘dink’ of the post dashing hope of a sixth goal, just enough time for Greys to mount one last attack, as a penalty corner was awarded, the final whistle blew.

Whilst the equaliser was a disappointing end to a frantic game, Adel can be happy with some excellent passages of play, individual performances and a real show of mature character in a testing environment. You could say it was unlucky, but most will know that passing through playoffs and gaining promotion in the manner it played out was a little more lucky than a four leaf clover, so we know we get a fair share of lady luck!

Next week see’s the visit of Harrogate who will be looking to avenge April’s result. PB is 12noon and we would love to see friends, family and pets there!

MoM- Emma Bickley. If you’re going to wear international stash to games, you must perform like one and Emma did not disappoint

Many thanks to NHUA and the umpires who made some bold and correct decisions, and the travelling support as always!

#ATID

 

Goals, goals, goals….

The first weekend of the league season saw all ten Adel teams in action and the new goals at the Adel astro continued to be well and truly tested.  39 goals for Adel (30 at home!) in total and 25 conceded with the star performers of the day the new kids on the block.

After a few seasons with only 4 ladies teams, the Ladies 5s have been resurrected for the 2016-17 season due to the high number of players, partly through the continued success of the junior section providing a strong pipeline of talent to the senior teams.  In their first game of the season the ladies 5s won 14 (Fourteen as they say on the Sky Sports and BBC video-printers) – 2 against Slazengers 4ths and this has set the high benchmark for the season ahead.   With a number of debutants and new members this was an outstanding start and promotion is clearly the target for this season!

The other ladies teams had tougher challenges with the 3s and 4s being unfortunate to face strong first teams from Acomb and Bradford.  The 4s lost 2-0 and the 3s in a league above last season following their promotion went down narrowly with a 2-1 defeat.

The ladies 1s ventured across the Pennines to Didsbury and shared the spoils in a 10 goal thriller.  The higher league will clearly provide some sterner challenges than last season with the 5 goals conceded here more than the total goals conceded in the league campaign last season.  The ladies 2s also drew 3-3 in a competitive game with Selby as they look to integrate new players into the team and await the return of a number of last seasons team from illness and injury.

The big game in the mens section was the all Adel clash between the 4s and the 5s.  Over the years we have had a number of these games in the club and they always promise to be competitive and private battles are keenly fought.   The 4s came out on top with a 4-0 win but I am sure the 5s will be looking forward to the return fixture later in the season.  The mens 3s started the season well with a good win over Boston Spa 2nds and the 2s travelled to Brigg and came back with a share of the spoils after a 3-3 draw.   The returning Johnny Staunton-Sykes, scored a couple and no doubt entertained the team with his tales of his last 4 seasons playing for Cambridge University.

Which leaves the mens 1s under new head coach, Ben Hendley with a tough first game against local rivals Ben Rhydding 2s who were relegated last season from the Premier league.  Will Purdy took the personal honours for the day as he bagged all 4 goals in a 4-2 win, much to the relief of several fantasy league managers.

So a promising first week with thanks to all the umpires, coaches and supporters (plus pets).  This week sees the England Hockey roadshow come to town with a presentation on their strategy later this evening which Paul or I will report back on.

Adel men’s 1s v Ben Rhydding 2s by James Mayhew

First day of the season, every team in the league starts on the same terms with everything to play for. Big Ben and his men were as pumped as Will P around the ladies sections what’s app.

New/similar faces in the squad this past Saturday saw Chris and Gareth/Rich Maver strengthen the strong Adel back line and midfield.

Adels opponents, Ben Rhydding were fresh faced, quick, skilful and sporting a lot of woeful barnets. It didn’t take Adel long to break the dead lock via a Will Purdy drag flick into the bottom right of the brand new overly priced goal! The kids with half a haircut bounced back immediately (forgot how it was scored). Will P went on to score three more and the other team one to leave Adel with three points, winning 4-2.

Some liquid Adel moves but still a lot to be worked on with strong teams throughout the league this year.

MOM – Will Purdy mainly for his four goal exhibition.

DOD – Jimmy for as always non hockeying reasons. A few tender souls in the dressing room negates this from ever happening.

Report by James Mayhew.

Fantasy Hockey League launches in time for first league games

fantasy_hockey_league_logo_by_alldawson
This is an invite for anyone to join the Leeds Adel Men’s fantasy hockey league. Sam has built the system to include every mens member of every squad, where points will be awarded to each player based on their performance, goals, clean sheets, cards etc – just like fantasy football.

It’s £5 to enter (payable on the site as you register your team) with monies raised going toward the Christmas/ End of Season dinner(s). Captain’s have all put fines of their sheets to those that don’t sign up!

It’s a great opportunity for a bit of friendly competition and banter – especially between the squads!

Rules are simple. Choose 11 players from any of the 5 squads, with a maximum of 3 taken from each. The formation is 442. You have a maximum of 24 transfers per season.

Joining a league couldn’t be easier, simply follow the link below. If you have not already registered then you will be requested to provide a few simple details to create your account and then you will be taken straight onto selecting your fantasy team.

To join the league click here

You’ll need the league password 002506LeedsA94b336 to join the league.

To start with each player is ranked as 3 stars, but after gameweek 6 the computer will automatically generate a players rating depending on performance. Who will be the Men’s MVP by the end of the season?

Not only will your fantasy teams be put against each other but the game automatically ranks all players by score in all of the positions. 5s players have the potential to earn just as many points as the 1s.

If you have any questions send me an email: samjacksons@icloud.com

I look forward to seeing you all playing soon!

Sam (Men’s 2’s Vice-Captain)

Chairman’s welcome to the new season

It gets harder and harder every year to establish when one season ends and another begins.  Does the last season end when you play the last league game, the end of season dinner, the AGM or some other hockey related milestone?  With summer league starting in early May and running through to August when pre-season training is already well under way, plus the Olympics to keep us all glued to the exploits of Team GB and seeing if there are any new fancy short corner drills we can copy, the hockey season seems to be the full 12 months of the year now.

As one of the elder generation of club members, I favour the view that the new season begins with the first 70 minute game of proper hockey against opponents away from Adel.  Most teams are therefore already up and running, dusting down the cobwebs on the kit, thanking the lord for the invention of rolling substitutes and making friendships with new team mates and renewing old acquaintances.

Two years ago, the new season was celebrated with the opening of the new astro pitch and this season we have finally welcomed a set of new top of the range goals from Harrod UK.  These are courtesy of everyone who plays in summer league at Adel which give the clubs coffers a healthy boost so thank you for the summer league organisers and all the players for participating.  A bigger vote of thanks needs to go to those dedicated and committed club members who turned up on Thursday evening and Friday morning to help build the Ikea flat pack goals (I have a fear of omitting someone if I mention the names so look at twitter or facebook to see who you should be grateful to!).

Perhaps an indication of the new season being well under way can be summed up by last week. Monday evening saw a meeting of the Executive Committee of the hockey section (I will introduce you to the various members in due course so you know who to approach on various issues).  Tuesday was ladies training night, with the men following suit on Wednesday.  Thursday was the team building exercise of “building your goals for the new season ahead” and finally Friday was junior training which included the added bonus of All Rounder selling the new kit and a presentation to the junior parents by Paul Lewis on the junior coaching structure, integration with the senior teams, player pathway and our expectations from everyone involved.  Then I think there were a few games on Saturday to complete the week.

Taking each of these in turn, the committee meeting began with a meeting with Andy Audsley who is one of the members of the AWMA Executive Council.  We are grateful to Andy for attending at short notice to update us on changing rooms, pitch maintenance, membership subscriptions, parking and kitchen accessibility.  There is more to this hockey mullarkey than meets the eye….  The remainder of the meeting dealt with the more mundane routine matters but the main one to look out for is the request to pay your annual subscriptions on time.  For the club to function properly, we rely on prompt payment of subscriptions so the various expenses over the course of the season can be covered.

A new season brings new faces to Adel and I wish those of you venturing out in your first season in the fluorescent orange and black every success on and off the pitch.  Sadly, we also lose some people at this time of the year as they go out and explore the world beyond Adel.  In particular we wish Helen Goacher well on her travels down under and hope that when she returns the ladies teams have continued the progress made over the last few seasons due to her presence on the field and as ladies captain last season.  We also say goodbye to a number of our talented juniors as they head off to University including Millie Jeavons, Megan Shields and Tom Taylor and we wish them every success with their hockey progress (and their studies!) and hope they are able to return to Adel when back in Leeds and act as good references for any new hockey playing friends they meet at University who end up here once they start work.

I begin my second season as Chairman with the words of my predecessor Greg Hilton still ringing in my ears (I always did listen to him when playing full back with him all those years ago) – “its a three year deal, in the first year you find out what the job is all about, the second year you do what you want to do and in the third year you plan your exit and find your successor”.  He was right about year one, although I hope my legacy is something a bit more than finally getting rid of the old astro turf from the overflow car park.  Two promotions, numerous awards, new goals were perhaps greater achievements although most will have been achieved with less time commitment and grief along the way.

This year, I have 3 ambitions for the club:

  1. To ensure the club provides a healthy, safe and enjoyable experience for all of its members
  2. To raise the image and reputation of the club with those who come into contact with us on and off the field
  3. To strengthen our relationships with all of our stakeholders and external bodies (AWMA, junior parents, other sections at Adel, England Hockey, WY Sport, sponsors and many more).

None of these mention success on the pitch as I firmly believe that if we get the above three right, winning games will naturally follow.  Not sure an upgrade of the dugouts is a natural link but that’s firmly on our agenda when time and money permit.

The ladies 1s have already started the season where they left off with some wins in their pre-season friendlies and finishing 2nd at the North Challenger event this weekend with keeper Sarah McCall being voted player of the final.  The ladies 2s had the honour of playing the first game with the new goals and with a young team and some regular players missing, they put up a determined performance against Harrogate but narrowly lost a ten goal thriller as they ran out of steam on a hot day.  Tina Parsons had the honour of scoring the first goal in the new goals and then “doubled up” by scoring the first goal of the second half in the other goal.  Having scored 4 goals the previous week in a high scoring draw against Driffield, it looks like goalscoring might not be a problem but perhaps Ash and the coaching staff will be focusing on defending at training this week having conceded 10 goals in 2 weeks!  The 3s will have benefitted from a tough game against strong opposition from Rhydding and with several players having stepped up to the 2s they had the opportunity to blood some of the talented juniors coming through from the junior section.  The 4s decided that the new backboards looked too nice to trouble as they played out a competitive 0-0 draw suggesting that they might be practicing shooting practice this week at training!

The mens section have had a few inter club games and with a steady influx of new players, the sides are beginning to take shape.  The 1s had a good win over local rivals Boston Spa last week and they look in good shape to start their title charge this season after narrowly missing out over the last 2 seasons.  New coach Ben Hendley has plenty of time during his period of garden leave to monitor progress, watch the opposition and identify how to get the team back into the Premier League for next season (a bit like Rafa Benitez then).

At the time of writing I have not seen the results from the other mens teams but I would encourage skippers and perhaps other players to post match reports and results on our various social media so the rest of the club can be aware of the cubs wider progress.

Good luck to everyone for the season ahead.  Please remember this is your club and it is run by a dedicated gang of volunteers who go over and above the call of duty to ensure everyone can enjoy their hockey at Adel on a Saturday.  If you think you are able to offer constructive suggestions, financial support, time or anything else please get in touch!

Hockeyfest – Saturday 27th August

Leeds Adel HC are taking part in the HockeyFest tomorrow up at the club and we are pleased to welcome Gary Limbert and Beth Moorley from England Hockey who will be popping along for some of the afternoon.  England Hockey were kind enough to provide some financial support for the new pitch when it was laid 2 years ago and our ladies 1s were of course awarded the Ladies club team of the year at the prestigious EH awards ceremony back in May.

The day is meant to be a fun occasion ahead of the new season starting and Gaby has been working hard to make sure the day goes successfully.  Please do your bit by popping along – as a minimum it will serve as pre-season fitness before the matches start!

Leeds Adel Announce Senior Coaching Lineup for 2016/17 Season

As quick as the last season ends the new one is now upon us. Training for our ten senior sides starts this week and in light of recent events at the Rio Olympiad, we are expecting big numbers at training with ladies starting Tuesday at 7pm and the men following suit at 7pm on Wednesday. The challenge for the club coaches is to help new players integrate into squads, stay enthusiastic for the sport and best prepare the squads for the start of the league campaigns in September. With six different sides entered into EH Competition, the club is hopeful of representation at Lee Valley before the season is through. It is with great pleasure that we can announce our diverse and experienced coaching team for the coming season and we hope you will get to know them over the coming weeks.

IMG_9569
Paul Lewis- Coaching Co-Ordinator and Men’s Club Coach

Paul Lewis is one of the most recognisable faces at Leeds Adel HC.  His input into the club is a well known driving factor of the positive steps made over the last few seasons.  For the last three years he has provided coaching as Ladies’ Club Coach and as one of our lead junior coaches. He is qualified to level 2 standard and continues to improve his coaching through England Hockey CPD events.  This year we are pleased that Paul has taken the lead with the club coaching structure, he has assembled his team and will continue to provide direct coaching to our very popular junior section as well as support the senior section fulfilling the role of Men’s Club Coach. Over the summer, Paul has been coaching with England Hockey JRPC, so as I am sure you can imagine, he is very busy at the moment (not to forget full time employment) and we hear that is just the way he likes it!

“I’m delighted with the coaching team we have put together for the forthcoming season. I’m confident that the success over the last few years in the Ladies section will be continued and hopefully replicated on the Men’s side.

All the coaches are experienced and will seek to drive individuals and groups to stretch themselves and develop their hockey. The commitment and effort of those attending sessions over the past few seasons has been excellent, and I hope everyone will see the social and sporting benefits of coming training.”

 

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Jenny Wright – Club Fitness Coach

Whilst we announce the season starts this week, for our club fitness coach Jenny Wright, season preparation started a whopping 8 weeks with a summer programme which has enjoyed great success. Not every club can boast the support of a gym and trainer, but the connection between Leeds Adel and Primal Gym gives our teams a distinct advantage on the pitch. We asked Jenny how important she thought fitness was as part of the preparation for the coming season:

“Fitness is one of many components needed to build on the success of last season. We know the games will be harder and we will be pushed to our limits, so we need to be ready- both physically and mentally.

Fitness can be improved fairly quickly under these controlled sessions, and will ensure that in the second half when other teams are flagging- our speed, strength, endurance and all round superior fitness will show.

Pushing players hard in training forms the mental toughness needed to keep going in the dying seconds of the game.

The fitness sessions are a great way for the team to bond as well. Friendly competition and super encouragement are part and parcel of the sessions and create a team strength that is invaluable on match days.

Train hard. Win easy!”

Ben Hendley- Men's Performance Coach
Ben Hendley- Men’s Performance Coach

Ben is another coach who has cut his coaching teeth at Leeds Adel with the ladies. In 2013/14 he was the performance coach for the ladies and the club are delighted that Ben once again is a performance coach, this time focusing on the higher teams in the men’s section. Our men’s 1st XI have suffered two very frustrating seasons, narrowly missing promotion with third place finishes in successive seasons. We asked Ben how he intends to grab one of those promotion spots come March 2017:

“Our aim this year is to win the league. We have a talented squad of players and have proven in previous years we are one of the best teams in our league. We will be focusing on improving our team play and decision making to increase our win consistency. I’m looking forward to season and can’t wait to get started.”

Sam Ransley- Ladies' 1st XI Coach
Sam Ransley- Ladies’ 1st XI Coach

Sam Ransley continues as Ladies’ 1st XI Coach for the third season. As a level 2 qualified coach Sam has enjoyed success with club, county and regional performance squads. The squad this year will be competing in a new league following promotion, we asked Sam what the focus is for the next few weeks

“I am very lucky to have been able to retain a core of players in the time I have been coach here, and this makes integrating new players very easy. Whether talented players moving up the club or new players joining, we only have a few weeks to establish a squad that train alike, think alike and play alike. If we can get our squad doing this, we are confident of another successful  season”

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Ash Hardaker- Ladies’ 2nd XI and Assistant Club Coach

We are delighted to have Ash back us. Ash has a wealth of experience as a level 2 coach, having worked with schools, clubs, county and university sides both in the UK and Australia. Ash’s easy going style makes him a popular coach, but do not be misled, he expects results:

“The clear aim for the season is going to be promotion. Success this season will be achieved by setting high standards both in training and in matches with excellent execution of skills and tactics from minute one to minute seventy of every game.”

 

Katy Blyth- Ladies' Club Coach
Katy Blyth- Ladies’ Club Coach

Katy Blyth has been coaching Leeds Adel juniors for numerous seasons. As a product of Adel coaching from the past, Katy has enjoyed many playing honours and now takes up the role of Ladies’ 1st XI captain. It is great that the leader of our performance squad is now helping the future of our club to integrate into senior squads. We asked Katy what a player can expect from training at Leeds Adel HC:

“Adel is such a wonderful, friendly club. We pride ourselves on providing coaching sessions which are challenging but also very fun. As a coaching unit we all bounce ideas of each other in order to achieve balanced sessions incorporating skill and game play work. Over the seasons the quality of coaching has improved greatly, this was reflected in the results, match performances and overall finishing positions of every ladies team. Tuesday nights are always challenging but also great fun!”

We hope that you agree that Paul has assembled a strong team and we look forward to seeing new and old faces at training this week and over the next few weeks of summer.

#ATID

Welcome to the new season

It gives me great pleasure to welcome you all for the 2016-17 season at Leeds Adel HC. I trust that you’ve had a great summer and that you are looking forward to the new season.
As you are hopefully aware, there have been two major changes this season.
NEW KIT
All Adel teams will use an ORANGE HOME KIT this season.
For new home and away kits, and a range of team-wear, please visit the All Rounder website. N.B. Men should have been allocated a unique shirt number, and these are shown on the All Rounder website when ordering home kit.
TRAINING
The set up and coaching structure has been refreshed. We now offer two sessions with a short fitness section for all members. Training starts again on Tues 23rd Aug for ladies and Wednesday 24th August for the men. Please arrive in time for each session to start promptly.
Training now follows the same structure for ladies and men:
  • 7pm to 8pm club training for 3rd to 5th XI players and juniors aged 13+
  • 8pm to 8:30pm fitness sessions for all
  • 8:30pm to 9:45pm performance squad training
Junior training continues on Friday evenings at Leeds Grammar School. We have boys and girls groups at all levels from u10 to u16 so if you know someone who would be interested, please send them along.
CUP NEWS
We have entered EH Cup competition for senior and masters teams for both men and women for the coming season and are aiming to enter England Mens Hockey competitions for over 40s and maybe over 50s. If you would be interested in playing, please make yourself known to Dave Akroyd or Paul Lewis.

Intense hockey camps – JAC/JRPC potential players

The first Intense Hockey camp at Adel over the summer is over and feedback from the attendees and organisers suggests everyone present had a great time and the improvement in the level of hockey ability over the week will be apparent when the new season starts.

Intense Hockey are running a specific camp at Adel (and nowhere else which suggests as though they must either like our new pitch or think Adel is the hotbed of young hockey talent….) aimed at players who will be attending JAC and JRPC centres in the year ahead.  Again, another opportunity to have a week of intense hockey training on your doorstep with qualified and experienced coaches.

For parents and juniors wondering what a JAC and JRPC actually are, these are steps on the England Hockey pathway whereby club and school players make the first steps to regional representation before hopefully progressing on to higher levels.  A JAC covers all of West Yorkshire whilst the JRPC might be a wider area across all of Yorkshire.  After that there are further levels where the 3 Northern JRPCs combine to create a Pennine Pumas team who are one of the four regional teams in England who have a tournament that acts to some extent as a selection panel for going on to England national age groups at under 16 and 18 levels.  After that, its all straightforward and simple and only a matter of time before you are in the GB squad going to the 2020 or 2024 Olympics and following in the footsteps of Barry Middleton (originally from Doncaster) or Sam Quek (ex Leeds Beckett Uni student)!

The link to the Intense Hockey website is attached if you are interested in attending.

http://shoutout.wix.com/so/5LOnlT1F#/main

 

Pre-season update

I have given this post the title of a pre-season update… in truth I am not sure the season ever ends now and activity over the summer months is just as busy as in the traditional winter hockey season.

To some people, one season ends perhaps with your final game in March, the club dinner in April or when you attend the AGM in April to help elect the new committee for the season ahead.  But for many people the season has rumbled along throughout May, June, July and August both on and off the pitch.

Summer leagues continue to thrive on Monday to Wednesday evenings with a healthy Adel turnout across a variety of Adel coloured teams…. black, orange, white but now the added bonus of seeing the likes of Will Purdy sporting a pink top and an Adel “junior” team which has an average age of around 32.  The good news is the OAPs team continue to turn up every week under Dave Akroyd’s stewardship with a wide range of former players donning the green and gold – I continue to hope that some of them will have the confidence to come out of retirement to play for Adel again next season, especially as their offspring will soon be pushing for places in the senior teams.  Thank you to Sam and Gaby for their organisation along with all the skippers for making sure we get teams out every week.

Paul Lewis has also been running Back to Hockey sessions on a Monday evening and judging by the numbers this has proved to be an instant success judging by the smiles I have seen on the faces of the regular attendees.  Hopefully some of them will have re-caught the hockey bug and want to join us when the 2016-17 winter season begins as new players are always welcome.

The fixtures for the new season are now on line (YHA website) – please try and avoid looking at them to see when your team has that tricky away  game in Lincoln or Grimsby and finding that you have an urgent hair appointment that day so won’t be able to make it.  I know travelling can be a challenge some weekends but life would be boring if we only played in LS16 every week.

Those of you using the overflow car park must have noticed that the old astro has finally disappeared after 2 years of valiant attempts to find a new home.  Sadly, most paths led to nothing and in the end we decided to bury it in the field next to the astro pitch – it would have been preferable to have come to this conclusion 2 years ago to save us moving it as far as we did, but thank you to Caroline whose horses are in the field next to the pitch (along with several balls from misplaces summer league undercuts) for taking the remaining astro off our hands in order that her horses can run around the field with less chance of picking up a fetlock injury.

The committee continue to plan for the season ahead – Hockeyfest will be coming to Adel at the start of the season, new goals which are desperately needed are being planned, a new coaching structure under Paul’s leadership is in place, EH cup competitions are being entered, a junior parents evening is being planned to improve our communication to parents and much much more.  Please do all you can to support the club with these initiatives where you can.

Further down the page you will see that the new kit and our new supplier (All Rounder in Headingley) are now available to order on line and there will be a small supply of stock in the shop.  I think it is great news that the club is returning to a single identity with common colours across all our teams and thanks again to Andy Bird and Paul Lewis (again…) for their work with All Rounder and planning the launch evening at the club.

An update on President Poll’s pre-season fitness schedule.  Richard, with the support of his wife Sue, is recovering well at home after his triple heart bypass operation over the summer.  Like all good professional sportsmen, it was pleasing to see Richard’s commitment to Adel by having this operation in the off season so that he will be back to full fitness for the season ahead.  In all seriousness, we all wish Richard well and look forward to seeing his return with both a whistle and a stick in hand.

It is easy to be critical of things that don’t quite go to plan at the club but sometimes its worth taking a step back and reminding ourselves where we have come from in the last 2 years.  We have a new pitch, improved floodlights, new kit, ladies teams being promoted across the board and a thriving summer league generating much needed revenue for the club.  Our bar is one of the best around the county and our junior section continues to grow under Pam Hardaker and Simon Suttons watchful management.  I know there are a few areas that we would still like to see improved, particularly the changing rooms in the cricket pavilion, new goals and improvements to the fencing behind them and perhaps a general tidy up of the dugouts.  But Rome was not built in a day, we do not have the benefit of a rich benefactor (unless one of you is keeping it a secret) and sometimes it is a case of prioritising what is needed now in order to survive and be able to play hockey at all.

Having recently attended the AWMA Council meeting (for those of you who are wondering what on earth this body is, the grounds and facilities at Adel are overseen by a charitable trust, the Adel War Memorial Association, which oversees all of the club facilities and management – we as a hockey section are one of a dozen or so sections who benefit and as a result each section provides a representative to oversee the management and development of the overall “club”).  I know that other sections are equally disappointed with the kitchen area and the changing facilities in the cricket pavilion and this latter point is a major project being reviewed by AWMA.  However, to do this justice, it needs to be done correctly with a long term timeframe and not a series of short fixes.  This of course requires more money but the initial stages are encouraging with plans to look at a new building on two stories with viewing on to the cricket and football pitches (bit of a stretch to watch the hockey perhaps) and a possible bar facility to save the long walk back to the clubhouse.  The obvious barrier is the cost and the hockey section has of course exhausted its grant applications in securing the finances needed for the new pitch.  I will keep you posted as this project develops but please bear with the AWMA and the committee.

One way to contribute towards the kitty needed to finance the project is to make more use of the club facilities.  The easiest source of revenue is form bar takings so I would encourage everyone to stop and have a drink after a game (summer and winter) and attend any social functions we run using the back room at the club.

Finally, there is a hockey committee meeting next week at the club – please feel free to send me any areas you would like discussing ahead of the new season.  Its your club and without your input we cannot ensure we take it forwards in the direction our members want to see!