Sports Journalism

First Time Skiers Guide – Part 3

Posted on Updated on

The morning after from getting fully equipped from the ski store is a very exciting time because you get to use the skis and see if you can rise to the challenge, I felt like a kid on Christmas day.

IMG_0105
Grant ski instructor and me

I was fortuitous because the company that brought me out to Morzine also treated me to a ski instructor.

Now, before I go straight into the action I feel I need to give you some valuable advice, as that’s my job with this guide. Make sure you have breakfast before leaving your chalet, you will burn a lot of energy very quickly and no one wants to be the weak link or the spoilsport of the group. Please make sure you fill up before leaving. I made a crucial mistake when I went to my first ski lesson and that is I forgot to bring water with me. I’m telling you from firsthand experience that you will crave water whilst out on the slopes. Food and drink is an essential please don’t try and skip any of this, you will regret it.

By now you will be in your ski kit and have all your equipment on you, ready to make the climb up to the top of the slopes. You can get the cable carts up there that’s not an issue but you need a ski pass to use them, adult passes range from €44.50 – €900 depending on whether you want a 5hour or a season pass, prices can vary depending what region you’re in.

When I arrived on the slopes the only information I knew about my instructor was that his name is Grant and that he will be wearing all yellow. Which at the time I didn’t realise the complications this could have, and it was only when I seen the hundreds of skiers that it dawned on me.

My lesson was meant to be at 11:00am and I ended up not starting it till 12:30pm because we couldn’t find each other but with a bit off luck and a phone call we managed to get it together.

Grant McNaughton is an instructor for New Generation Ski School, who I would highly recommend. We started off putting one foot in a ski and keeping the other one free from the ski. The point of this exercise is to get a good indication of your balance but also to get a feel for the ski.

The next part major part to your ski lesson and the hardest technique for a beginner is the snowplough. This is where your ankles need to spread as far apart as possible but your toes need to be as close as they can without touching, this will then control the speed you go at down the slope. It took me a lot of attempts just to get it at an average standard but with a lot of grit and perseverance I managed to progress. I will admit that it took me a lot of walking up the slope just to go again and your feet start to go numb from the boots after a couple of hours.

Once you progress on you start to learn how to turn and then things start to get interesting because you can really see the how well you’re doing.

Grant was very encouraging and I felt that he was with me every step of the way and as an instructor he was faultless. Lessons for beginners in Morzine cost between €79 – €99.

I must touch upon something said in the First Time Skiers Guide – Part 1, I was wrong to ever think that the dry slope for skiing would help me.

Overall the experience of learning how to ski was a most memorable one and I would encourage everyone to at least try it once. You will ache, crash and fall but like the saying goes ‘no pain, no gain.’ On my last turn down the slope before the end of the lesson, I opened pointed my toes down on the skis too fast and came to a crashing stop where my shoulder plunged into the snow but you just have to pick yourself up and go again.

Morzine really has everything to offer for the best first time skiers holiday, the chalets are beautiful, the town fantastic and the ski resort is up there with the best. Although if you’re out drinking avoid the beer Mutzig it’s lethal at 12%!

 

Advertisements

Wembley welcomes France and England friendly on a night where football was irrelevant

Posted on

A match, whom everyone thought would be cancelled due to the terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday night, has turned out to be an occasion that demonstrated solidarity.

Players In Solidarity Before Kick Off
French & English players in solidarity

The French Football Federation decided the match would go ahead, and The FA backed the decision to have the game played.

France would be welcomed at Wembley in a spirit of fraternity and defiance as an act to stand up to terrorism.

Tricolore Gesture
Wembley tricolore tribute

 

Although France manager Didier Deschamps had offered his players the chance to pull out of the squad before they travelled to London because of the circumstances.

French Football Players Arrival In London
French team arrive in London

Leading up to the game England manager Roy Hodgson said, The match will be a serious occasion but one that shows that the football world is united against these atrocities.”

Security has been increased in the wake of the Paris attacks, as the Metropolitan Police don’t want to see repeat scenes from Friday happening tonight.

Met’s Specialist Crime and Operations Deputy Assistant Commander Peter Terry said, “we’ve reassessed what security we think we need for tonight’s occasion, especially considering who we’re playing. We’ve assessed what happened in France and we’ve changed what the appearance of what the security will look like tonight.”

Heightened Security At Wembley
Security being increased at Wembley Stadium

In a change of protocol, the away team’s national anthem was sung after England’s ‘God Save The Queen’.

Over 70,000 people roared out ‘La Marseillaise’ as a tribute to the 129 victims of Friday’s attacks, England fans in the east side of Wembley held up cards which formed the French Tricolore.

French Tribute At Wembley
French flag tribute in the east stand of Wembley

 

England was victorious winning 2-0.

France’s captain, Hugo Lloris, thanked England’s fans for their support but admitted the French team found it hard to concentrate.

“All of this has been very hard, but we played the match for our country and for the victims. Tonight was a moment of national unity,” said Lloris.

French Players Preparation
French players escorted around Wembley with armed police

 

The result was always going to be meaningless but the occasion couldn’t have been any different and will live in the memory for everyone who watched and attended the match.

Swindon Supermarine Continue Their Impressive Preseason With 5-0 win

Posted on Updated on

The Webbswood Stadium played host as Swindon Supermarine played Corsham Town in a preseason friendly. Marine showed their class against a team who looked out of their depth straight from the get go. This win ensured The Marines unbeaten preseason record was kept in tact, and demonstrated the strength they have in their ranks at the club.

Strikes from new signings Connor Waldon and Jacob Davidge gave Supermarine a comfortable lead going into halftime. Two goals from Josh Morse and a goal from Ryan Stanners, who were used as substitutes in today’s game, sealed a compelling victory for the Wiltshire based team.

Marine looked right at home from kick off, dominating possession and working the ball in midfield. It didn’t take long before the first opportunity was created as Chris Taylor played a diagonal pass out to the left hand side and Davidge raced on to the ball, but his shot flashed across goal and went out for a goal kick.

The visitors were proving to be a handful up top with midfielder Levi Cox winning the ariel battle throughout the first half. Cox was proving to be a tricky customer and had Corsham’s first shot on goal with a thunderous volley that had Matt Bulman scrambling to his right-hand side, but the shot whistled just past the post.

The home side took the lead on the 20th minute with a controversial goal from Connor Waldon, there were appeals for offside before the former Swindon Town striker nutmegged Corsham’s goalkeeper and slotted the ball home.

Image courtesy of Jeffyouphotography
Image courtesy of Jeffyouphotography
The Marine soon doubled their lead eight minutes later as Jacob Davidge finished off a brilliantly worked goal from the righthand side. Winger Bradley Gray combining with fullback Kyle Lapham before drilling the ball across for Davidge.

Davidge who was having a great debut for Supermarine, had the chance to double his tally. Once again he raced clear from a precise pass from Marines playmaker Chris Taylor, but Town’s keeper pulled off a good save to prevent them going in 3-0 down.

Supermarine went into halftime with a comfortable lead over their opponents, whilst Corsham Town looked like they couldn’t wait to get in and regroup for the second half.

The second half was much like the first half for Marine, as they showed no sign of settling for the result they already had.

The home team begun to find their rhythm and Waldon showed why he was Supermarines main transfer target this summer with some great holdup play and skill to skip past Corsham’s centre-back Sam Ockwell, cutting the ball back to Davidge who puts the ball wide from a shot 12 yards out.

It didn’t take long for Swindon’s next chance to come along, with Bradley Gray rising above everyone else to direct his header from a corner towards goal but Corsham managed to clear it off the line.

Town looked lackluster in this half and struggled to create anything up top. Marine’s defence looked solid with summer signings Ashley Taylor and Ryan Morgan already looking settled in their positions.

Dave Webb, Supermarine’s manager, decided to switch things up and subbed on Ryan Stanners, Josh Morse, Joe Shepherd, Ryan Elliott, Sam Morris and Ryan O’Hara.

The subs made an instant impact as Waldon plays a perfectly weighted pass to put Stanners through on goal, who calmly finishes to put Marine 3-0 up with 75 minutes played.

Stanners then turns from goal scorer to assister, as he squares the ball across goal to Josh Morse who comes in off the left-hand side, beats the defender using the tricky of the step-over to go through one-on-one and tuck away the host’s fourth goal.

Morse scored Supermarine’s fifth goal, and his second of the game with a powerful volley into the keepers top right. Town’s keeper was left standing as he could only watch the ball fly past him into the top corner.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Connor Waldon, who resigned back to the club earlier this week after being released from Swindon Town FC. Was brought in on loan at Marine last season for three months and quickly become a fan favourite.

“I am really happy the deal went through and Dave (Supermarine manager) reassured me of the clubs ambition. The whole team looks like it has improved a lot compared to last seasons.

I felt I had a good game today, and It’s always a good feeling to get on the score sheet. We looked very dangerous in attack and the score line should have been a lot more.

I can’t wait for the season to start and for us to give the Marine fans the season they deserve,” said Waldon.

This win capped off an emphatic performance from Marine and showed that they have the resources to do well in the league this season.

Marine have beat fellow rivals and League One side Swindon Town FC in their preseason and since that win, they have not showed signs of letting up.

Dave Webb has brought in a lot of young new players, and his gamble on players looks to be paying off. Webb’s team already looks like it is in the process of the team gelling together and if Supermarine can continue to play their attractive style of football like they have this preseason, then they will be one of the teams to watch in the Evo-Stik League.

“This is our fifth preseason game and we are making good progress, the squads looking strong and we kept another clean sheet. I am pleased where we are at the moment and it’s all heading towards two weeks time when we start at Bambury in the league on the 8th of August.

We’ve attracted a good mix of players and have a good spine to the team. We have some really exciting young players and I don’t think we could be in any better shape,” said Dave Webb.