Basingstoke Bulls debuted their new kit in style with two huge wins over Southampton University. The first team started the day with a record breaking 30-7 win. This was the first time in Basingstoke's history that they had scored 30 goals. 10 players got in on the goals with 11 players providing an assist. Viktor Bogdanov led the way with 6 goals but was closely followed by Adam Gillies on 5. Kieran Davey managed 4 goals despite only being introduced with 20 minutes to play. Although the boys were high on the scoring charts (Steve Wadsworth, Rich Bloomer and Vlad Stolojan all scored 3), it was the girls who made the plays and set the boys up well. Louisa Gillies assisted 6 goals on a day where the Bulls were rampant. Defence was key to this match with 29 rebounds being recorded from the defensive division and good hustle play led to 41 interceptions or forced turnovers.
It is fair to say that Basingstoke Bulls 1 have sent a real message to the other title contenders with 48 goals scored in their first two games. With plenty of games left this month it will be interesting to see who tops the table at the end of October.
Basingstoke then went on to make it two wins from two with the Second team winning comprehensively against Southampton Uni 3. Although most of the squad have been playing for less than a year they more experience than their opponents and played simple korfball to devastating effect. Eight different players scored goals in a 16-2 victory with Holly Wakefield topping the charts with 4 goals. In contrast to the first game it was the girls getting the goals as Margo Bogdanova added 3. The boys provided assists this timee with Kieran Davey adding to his day with 3 assists (and 3 goals). Matt Shortell and Jonny Crook added 2 assists each. Given that the second team has only played two matches it was a very assured display of korfball and the team will surely be feared in future matches.
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Saturday 22nd September 2018 was a particularly wet day. To my mind this marked the end of summer. That means one thing: The indoor korfball season is due to start! Will Southampton Spartans finally get the better of Bristol Thunder and claim the Western Regional League title? Could Oxford City or Farnborough beat Southampton to become the highest ranked OKA team in the league? Last season, all three teams were separated by 1 point so it should be a cracker!
In OKA 1 it is all change. The league has been reduced from 11 teams to 8 and sees old rivalries renew. Will Southampton Uni have made themselves the team to beat having won every game last season. One of the other Southern clubs seems best placed to take the crown with both Southampton City and Farnborough Jets placing very highly and Basingstoke finishing strongly following a very heavy recruitment drive.
Abingdon and Oxford City will each be hoping to take the title back to Oxfordshire for the first time since 2011 whilst Oxford Isis and Oxford University will be aiming to improve on last season's results and get themselves back to their former glories.
The second division has also had a major shakeup and is arguably the strongest it has ever been with Didcot Dragons, Buckingham Royals and Guildford Thunder all entering the top teams in this league. It seems likely that the title will go to one of these three however expect both Abingdon and Southampton Uni to put up a strong showing. Oxford City 3 were relegated from Division 1 last season so will surely be looking to set things right whilst it will be interesting to see if the second teams from Buckingham and Didcot can finish ahead of their ‘parent’ teams. Grudge matches aplenty.
Division three is split regionally with the North being a straight battle between the three Oxford clubs and Abingdon. The South has started a division three for the first time and will be hotly contested between all of the teams in the south. Farnborough 2 and Reading will start as title favourites, but I have high hopes for Basingstoke 2 in their first season (OK, I may be slightly biased there!)
There is no doubt about it, this season will go down in history with 32 teams competing across 5 leagues. It’s going to be great.
On a rainy Saturday morning, 14 representatives from OKA teams attended a referee theory course in Oxford.
The course was led by Matt McConville (OKA referee development officer) and was split into two elements; an interactive presentation followed by an examination of rule knowledge.
Everyone who came took lots of useful insights away and plenty of the attendees passed their exam with a few ‘near misses’ who will be invited to re-sit in the next few weeks.
I know several senior referees in the area will be able to mentor these brilliant new referees to get some practical experience and start to get to grips with the rules in a game setting. The more support that any new referee can get; the easier it will be for them to improve.
Thanks should go to all who attended, joined in and made it worthwhile.
A special thank you should also be given to Fiona Jelley of Oxford City, for allowing us to use the perfect venue at the University’s Norham Gardens facility.
If you have interest or queries about the OKA’s commitment to referee development, don’t hesitate to contact Matt McConville to discuss them.
The OKA AGM is being held at 4pm on Saturday 6th May at Tatham Hall, The Northcourt Centre, Northcourt Road, Abingdon, OX14 1NS. Please arrive at 4pm for a 4.15pm start. The meeting will finish by 7pm at the latest.
Please remember that any agenda items should be submitted by 14th April. Anything received after that deadline will be discussed at the Chair’s discretion.
It would be nice to share some cakes at the start of the meeting, so if anyone is able to bring something along, please let Ruth know.
There have been quite a few open roles this season and we are looking to elect a full committee this year. The league will not run unless core roles are filled. It would be brilliant if it was possible to have someone representing every club on the committee, so please can you and your club members to consider whether they are willing to get involved? The past year we have been having meetings over Skype which has vastly reduced the travelling time involved and we have tried to limit the meetings to one and a half hours. A summary of all the committee roles soon, but if you have any questions in the meantime, please do get in touch with the current committee.