‘Where’s the ball Ian?’
By Ian Russell

After a very successful morning of Korfball against Dragons 2, the Cyclones squad refuelled and travelled down the M4 for their regional game against Oxford. The previous weekends demolition of Horfield away gave the squad a lot of confidence going into this new game.

The team welcomed back Elaine Dunlop after a prolonged absence in the Netherlands. The team lined up with Ruth Campbell, Elaine Dunlop, Ramzi Barbir, Ian O’Sullivan in first attack with Julie Prosser, Zoe Rose, Max Lloyd and Chris Gubby making up the other section. Susan Jones and Ian Russell warmed the bench.

The match started at a cautious pace as the newly cleaned floor proving a sobering factor in the initial exchanges. Ruth started with 2 close range goals after strong attacks by both teams. Max’s vision and execution of an outstanding pass allowed Chris to add to the total. Cyclones continued to dominate the collect allowing some fluent attacks, the combinations between Ian O and Zoe causing problems for the visitors. The scores continued to climb with a long shot from Ramzi close to the halfway line a highlight. Oxford closed the gap but drop off shots from Ruth and Chris continued to increase the pressure on the English side.

The reminder of the half was a prime example of attacking control as the ball was reused and a wide range of goals scored, Julie scoring a collection of running shots with Ruth and Ramzi’s medium range goals added to the total. Elaine showed she had lost little in her time away with some very close shots, some that seemed to defy gravity as they rolled around the korf and back out. Oxford did not lie down and brought the score back to 11-4 by half time.

The second half of the contest started at a more sedate pace with strong defences on both sides ensuring the first half’s rapid scoring was not repeated. Oxford started well, scoring regularly, but after a time out, Cyclones re-established their control of the match with strong passing that resulted in Ramzi scoring a well taken mid-range shot. Ian R came onto the pitch replacing Max who had been dominating his player close to the post. Zoe secured the Cyclones win with a series of accurate penalties. Ian R scored a close range shot after being left alone near the post. The game came to a controlled end with a further drop off goal added by Ruth, set up by Elaine. The final score was 18-9 in favour of the home team.

Cyclones can now look forward to their remaining regional games with a lot of confidence after this convincing performance.