A day of celebrations for Bay Olympic’s 25th Anniversary culminated in this extravaganza of past and present Bay Olympic players turning on their style. Sean Hird’s Green Machine contained a number of players from our Championship winning days of 2005 and 2006. Paul Marshall’s Blue Team contained many players from our Championship winning teams of 2011 and 2012. Added to the mix were two Club Legends - Marty Miller and Stacey Howell who both played in Bay Olympic’s first ever game at Whitney St in 1998, a 5-2 historic victory over Lynn-Avon in which Stacey got on the score sheet.
To ease the workload on some of the older legs, three players from our more recent remarkable victory over Manurewa namely, Callum McNeill, Hamed Basiri and Patch Bowen took the field.
Current squad member Ollie Pocock had the gloves for the Green Team and Zane Green, the Club’s most passionate South Island supporter was in goal for Blue. If you have heard the expression “ You have to be a little crazy to play in goal” well I can tell you that it originated with Zane. Both teams played to win - you can’t take the competitive nature away from these guys - it doesn’t matter what age they are! For the Blue Team Rab McNeill showed he still knew what runs to make, but didn’t get the service and had to limp off with an age strain. Elliott Dye tried his best to recapture his form of nearly twenty years ago but couldn’t get on the scoresheet. Leighton Watts enjoyed the occasion with a grin from ear to ear as did Neil Woodhams and James Pritchett. Dino Botica, Sam Burfoot and Ben Billings showed touches of class with their performances. Sean Hird played a cameo and showed us he was as passionate as ever about the game. D.J. Jones and Nic Farac were as laid back and classy as ever. Liam Mulrooney proved he could still be playing at Premiership level!
The Blue team had Chad Coombes to drive them on in his relentless style. He was desperate to score a goal but I don’t think he did. Matt Cuneen, Julyan Collett and Harry Nash showed us some of what we were missing this past season, a touch of class and experience. Ryan Elder proved he should still be training and playing for the Bay! Luke Jorgensen looked even better than I told his father he would be years ago. Al Taaf looked as exciting as always as did the one and only Club favourite Yoji Tanabe. Rhys Ruka was all energy and class and proved he should never have left us. Jarrod Colligan tried to add to his impressive goal tally for the Club but unfortunately didn’t get the service from his teammates and was out of luck.
The game itself resulted in a win to the Green Team 3-2. I believe the goals were scored by Callum McNeill 2 and Nic Farac for the Green Team and for the Blues Hamed Basiri and Luke Jorgensen. It didn’t really matter, it was a pleasure to see these players perform and we thank them for their efforts. Roll on 2048!