Jonny Davis, a middie for Team Scotland, will be blogging from Turku, Finland. Jonny will be detailing the daily ins and outs of what it’s like to play in the U19 World Games, but also share experiences from off the field. Below is the first installment of the U19 Scotland lacrosse blog.
Despite having played a game the day before, it was another early start to get more walk throughs in before grabbing lunch. Having ate stacks of bread and meat sauce we lounged outside waiting for training to start. Korea v Holland had begun so we did our best to support the Koreans – Holland being our opponent for tomorrow. It was a worthwhile watch, checking out both their weaker and stronger players to shape our training later that day.
Once the bus had dropped us off at the training pitch, we tightened up our defense and attack for the big game. Turku has finally started to heat up, and so the more Scottish among us began burn up under the sun – the smell of sun screen will become synonymous with the Scottish camp.
However the big event of the day was Canada v USA. After a quick Subway we headed over to the stands to catch the game. Unfortunately I had to pick up my family so missed some of the game, but from what I heard it was a pretty tense game, with the crowd largely behind the Canucks to break the US teams monopoly on international U19 lacrosse. However, with family here, I had no problem taking a free three course meal and meat plate to end the day.
Day 6 saw Scotland v Holland, a game with some background. We had already faced the Dutch during the British National Championships, having lost control of the game in the second half – a loss entirely Scotland’s fault. Having being told history repeats itself, we were keen to set the record straight and prove our worth when it counted.
We met in the morning, unwisely in front of the church on a Sunday – to get more walk throughs in to help us work against the Dutch. Taking only 20 minutes or so, we had some free time to get game ready.
We arrived at the pitch with a large orange contingent having already arrived to support the Dutch, but Scottish fans slowly filtered in in time for the national anthem, ‘Flower of Scotland’. Both supporters cheered one another’s anthem, a good way to end the pleasantries before both sides got to work. We exploded out of the block with two quick goals, but complacency on our half and skill on the Dutch got soon evened the game up, and the score line remained within one or two goals throughout. With 2 minutes remaining we were two goals up, losing composure in attack and fearful of a quick Dutch comeback. With a Scottish disallowed goal and Andrew Bolland taking the ball from goal into the opposing half, we held the 9-7 lead that would win us the yellow group. A difficult game came with a reward – we now face the weakest team of the group, Wales.
A post game high and England v USA made entertainment for the evening easy, coupled with two bikes hired by Adam Kee’s family and we were quickly buzzing round Turku with cheers from lacrosse players and spectators (we have to wear something to show we play for Scotland at all times – easy to distinguish).
After a hard and at times complacent fight against the Dutch today, we get very welcome lie in before facing the Welsh.