I’ve been checking you up, I’ve been tracking you down. Funny all the things that I’ve found.
Was it any surprise? Didn’t you realize?
It doesn’t matter any more to you…
It doesn’t matter what I say…’cos you’ve got that look in your eyes.
My Camera Never Lies
Bucks Fizz – The Camera Never Lies
One of the great joys for me in the writing of this blog is when those who follow it sometimes interact with it.
In some respects it’s a sign of my own insecurity as by either liking it on Twitter or leaving a comment, there’s some sort of proof positive that it is being read and there’s a reaction to it, whether approving or otherwise. If the blog generates some extra discussion about Cov that might not have occurred otherwise, well that’s a good outcome as far as I’m concerned. Whilst it remains a hobby, it’s immensely satisfying that there are those who read it with some regularity.
Better still, if in so doing it encourages a greater interest in the club, then really I couldn’t ask for anything more.
Which is why I am indebted to Paul Rossborough.
Paul and I will chat fairly regularly about Cov via social media and, whilst we’ve done little more than say hello in passing on a Saturday afternoon, he is someone whose opinions I value greatly.
Having read yesterday’s post, Paul forwarded me a photo that reinforces an observation I’d made about Luke Narraway.
Without wishing to repeat myself, briefly I’d said how impressed I was with Luke’s commitment to the club and that at the Fylde game on Saturday he was very vocal pitchside, especially whenever Cov had to defend (which in fairness wasn’t a great deal).
A little while after the post was published, Paul kindly forwarded to me a photo from the game that illustrates this perfectly. I should mention that I don’t know the origin of the photo so I can’t credit the snapper, but needless to say I would have done otherwise. Nick Meredith perhaps? Or Rob Clifford? Presumably its from Twitter or Facebook, so its in the public domain…but thanks anyway! (Nick Meredith has since been in contact to confirm that he took the photo).
The photo captures the moment that young Tom Emery blazes his way down the left wing on his way to dotting down for another 5 pointer…which makes for an interesting image in itself. Tom has certainly got a pretty broad smile on his face and you can only imagine what the forlorn defender is thinking – he’s can’t even bring himself to look up at that point.
However, it’s the background that is of most significance for me:
Notice the reaction of all three of the senior players. Narraway is clapping and looks to be showing his appreciation of those involved in the build-up, whilst Sammy Tuitupou fist pumps and Latu raises his arm in the air triumphantly.
The three most senior players showing the most reaction – it sort of tells a story of it’s own, doesn’t it?
Whilst the intention of the photo was presumably to capture what was happening on the pitch, the most interesting aspect of it is what’s happening off it.
The really impressive thing though is that this is either try number 7 or try number 9 – and yet their reaction is no different than had it been the opening score, or the one that ensured the bonus. With the game already well won, there is no lessening of their enjoyment. Both Sammy and Latu have already played their part in the first half demolition (Luke has yet to go on) – yet there is no loss of concentration or desire to retire to the stand and sit out the remainder of the game.
If I were a coach from one of the clubs in our league with expectations a top two or three finish, this is a photo that would give me nightmares.
Okay, they’ll know that all three in the photo are contracted to Cov, but there’s always going to be the hope that maybe they won’t be as committed to their rugby now they’ve dropped down a league or two – perhaps they’re just there to see out the last couple of seasons of their careers, playing in a less competitive environment.
Bad news guys….they’re here to win and to help Coventry back into the Championship after 7 long years in relative wilderness of National One. And their reactions show exactly how committed they are to that goal.
And if I were Jon Sharp – well, I’d be pinning it up on my office wall.
To see these guys come to Cov and show such commitment to the cause, and enthuse about the club in the way they have, has added greatly to the excitement of the season so far. They could have gone elsewhere, they all had other options, most of which were either in the Championship or Premiership, but they chose Cov…and that photo goes some way to show that they have bought into what the club is trying to achieve and really want to be a part of it.
It doesn’t matter what I say… ‘cos you’ve got that look in your eyes.
The camera never lies
And as a final observation on that photo, note the reaction of the Fylde players on the ‘bench’. They all look grim and resigned, especially the player leaning on his knee.
It’s probably made worse by the Cov supporters behind them cheering Tom Emery on.
Look closely again and you’ll see that Matt Price, Tony Gulliver and Brian King are far less emotive…their feelings are clearly more controlled and set the tone for the professionalism of the management and coaching staff.
Rugby can be such a cruel game and in that single photo one can identify a whole array of emotions. It wasn’t too long ago that Cov supporters and players were feeling something pretty similar when Blackheath, Rosslyn Park and Esher did for us on our travels last season and it’s not hard to imagine just how the Fylde players must be feeling at the moment the photo was taken.
This season is going to be something of a struggle for everyone involved with Fylde Rugby Club…hopefully, by the time we play them at the BPA things will have picked up somewhat.
I can only wish them well.
Just for info – the coach for the next away game, to Cambridge, has just 4 seats left.
Still over a week and a half to go and there could well be some very disappointed supporters, so best get in contact with the Supporters’ Club (firstname.lastname@example.org) sooner rather than later.
As I understand it, Quent is investigating the possibility of either putting on a bigger coach, or running a second one should the demand arise. It might well be that the remaining seats have been already taken, so it’s worth getting your name to Quent asap – if it is a case of needing a second coach, there would be a waiting list and once there are enough on it to ensure that the break even point for both coaches has been reached, then the second can be booked.
In addition, seats are already being reserved on the coaches to Old Elthamians and Darlington – I imagine if Darlington remain in the top two or three, the coach for that game will fill up a good couple of weeks beforehand.
The popularity of the coaches is a further example, if one is needed, of just how much interest there is in the team at the moment. Success breeds success and it looks like we might well be taking a second coach to an away game before too long, something that few if any could have envisaged 12 months ago when we only managed one win on our travel before Christmas last season.
And now look at us…
Loughborough on Saturday, never a fixture to attract one of Coventry’s bigger crowds in any season, should be a decent indicator of whether the increase in attendance figures this season is something of a temporary surge or is now becoming a trend. Moseley and Blackheath would always bring in bigger than average gates, but the Bishop’s Stortford attendance of 1703 was probably unexpected. Anything approaching that and I’m sure there will some celebration in the boardroom…continued gates of this ilk will bring in some much needed revenue, especially when there is just the one home game in the whole of December (against Ampthill).
Unfortunately, there’s only one Zoo Sports Shield fixture as well, and that’s on the same day as the Ampthill game, so if you’re hoping to watch Cov at all in the run up to Christmas, then getting your name down for the SC coaches during that period might well be a good idea.
Bucks Fizz – winners of the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest…to be honest I made my mind up about them years ago (see what I did there?), but for those prepared to give them the benefit the doubt, here’s ‘My Camera Never Lies’ which reached No 1 in 1982.