Like Orville and Wilbur, thirty Mals brave and true turned up on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic ocean. Several choruses of ‘up where we belong’ were heard and the first flight flew into Mals history. Another two flights followed and everyone arrived safely to hear the D.G.’s wise words!
Momentum again was the watch-word until it came to raising the flag, where the warden managed to take the ‘Sym’ out of symbolic’. Captains selected their teams and the ‘Trip’ was a go!
The treasurer, as usual, got the sports off to winning ways by dominating the tennis 2 – 1. Presidential duties called and our incoming President Andy Clay presented the temporary head of school with a Japanese Plum Tree to celebrate our first visit to the new island school.
Basketball, volleyball and table tennis were all won comfortably. Obviously the Mals’ sporting elite felt at home in the new quality surroundings.
Not such a good result on the squash court where we were narrowly defeated 3 – 2. Flexi-trip Marsland playing in the final match.
There was a buzz at dinner until Eddie repaired his hearing aid. President Dann had continued the momentum of the 2011 trip and, as tradition dictated, our new president Andy Clay was duly flushed in. Sam Lighting, Paul Broadbent, Steve (tug of war) Pickard and Richard Flower Jnr were also flushed in and lowered the Mals’ average age by about 20 years.
First night dinner is always a lively affair. The new Deputy Golf Organizator in his first speech declared that the 13 hole competition on Thursday would be played off ½ h’cap. It’s nice to know ‘we are in safe hands’.
The usual suspects performed during dinner but again another milestone was set when new boy Jules Kerby went shopping at the Co-Op between courses! The president wasn’t amused and confiscated his loyalty card.
Celebrations went on until the early hours 4 – 1 up on the first day – must be a first!
Thursday morning and double agent Ben Jakes won the Perry Pot with Dave Epton retaining the Morgan Mug.
Beach Football was the usual in and out affair with the Mals going down 6 – 2.
With a great deal of confidence the Mals’ Tug of War Captain, Steve Pickard decided to play his Joker! Unfortunately the opposition decided not to play at all and a walk over was declared.
Onto the ‘Sailor Pooley Trophy’. As usual plenty of enthusiasm and some experience, anyway Admiral Snell in one of his finest hours managed to extract a victory another momentous milestone!
The Rock summoned his troops and marched to the Garrison for the hockey where the Mals were narrowly defeated 1 – 0.
The Mals were now 6 – 3 up with the Scillonian beckoning.
Over-training took its toll on the younger Mals and the darts and pool teams were both thrashed. A level of respect was retained when the Mals won the snooker 3 – 0. Well done Ben Guest and team. More celebrations into the early hours.
What would Friday bring? Just more of the same, fuzzy heads and less hand-eye co-ordination!
The Golfer/Goofer gruesome foursome is one of the weeks standout events and was ably won by Nick Jones and Steve Pickard.
Now onto the serious stuff, golf and bowls. Golf captain Simmo was under some pressure to deliver a victory and didn’t let us down with 4½ – 3½ point triumph.
In the bowls, captain Paul ‘Francis Drake’ Broadbent in a very tight game managed to come away with a half.
Friday night dinner is always a less intense affair with the anticipation of badminton, rifle shooting and archery to follow. Pete Nelstrop proposed a toast to the new boys Rob Epton, Ben Jakes, Nick Jones and Jules Kerby and Nick replied suitably.
With a bigger badminton facility at the school the Mals swamped the Islanders 7 – 5. The shooters also returned victorious, we were now 11½ – 5½ up! History was being written!
Definitly beer o’clock now!
Saturday broke in a confident mood – our President meteorologist predicted sunshine and showers and, for once, he was right!
Up to the golf course and the Bishop Beaker was won by ex prezzie Steve Dann and the Goofers Nosworthy Noggin by shopaholic Jules Kerby.
A busy afternoon brought the Mals back down to earth with defeats in the cricket versus St. Mary’s and the verses the Woolpack Wanderers.
No need to panic yet. The steadying hand of the president plus the hierarchy would steer us through!
After dinner a new competition took place, the Cleverdick Challenge with a splendid trophy kindly donated by Graham Willington.
A close contest with Clive ‘Cleverdick’ Mumford’s team triumphing on their specialist round – ‘Steve Watt: Diver or Diva’?
Slightly less cerebral the boat race ended in disappointment for the Islanders with a disqualification on a technicality – leaving captain James ‘Eggstatic!’
The rolling result tally now standing at Mals 12½ – 8½ Islanders, there was no time to panic, so everybody retired to the bar for some sedatives and a well-deserved rest.
Late breakfast followed by shooting, cricket and football who could ask for more? Well, our president left us under no illusion of the task in hand – focus! Well, I think that’s what he said!
Andy Smith returned with a superb victory in the clay pigeon shooting and Richard Flower redeemed himself with a victory against Tresco in the cricket. 14½ – 8½. Game over??
Momentum was building and a well-contested football match against the Gunners ended in a narrow defeat 3 – 4.
The end of the trip was now unfortunately in sight, as were our guests for a special night of entertainment.
Our president Andy Clay proposed a toast to our Island friends and John Morley responded. Telling us many stories of his colourful past with some of the senior Mals.
Temporary head Liz Duffy-Griffiths informed the Mals that Joseph Sibley was the recipient of the 2012 Merit Trophy Award. The 100 club prize winners were drawn and former head teacher Bryce Wilby managed to win a prize to boost his fighting fund.
The dining room was then cleared so the thespians could put their final touches to ‘Cinderella – The dark version returns’!
Where does the week go? Only two more competitive matches cricket and Gig racing. But first it’s the Texas Scramble won by Simmo, Little Dick, Sam Lighting and Chadders. Could Richard Flower keep his good captaincy going in the cricket? A positive yes! A fantastic team effort saw the Mals win comfortably. 15½ points to the Mals.
Back to St. Mary’s and straight down the boat sheds for our annual row. A big thank you to all those people who put in the work to allow the Mals to take these precious boats out to sea. As usual we were competitive for the first 100 metres which was never good enough! The old gits again thrashed the other Mal boats to gain another creditable victory.
A quick shower and it was hoe-down time! Many thanks to the Tregarthen’s team who transformed the dining room into a farmyard. Every Mal made an effort to blend in and a fantastic evening was had by all.
With bills settled it was soon time to bid good-night to our friends and team mates.
Breakfast started at 7.00am, would there be any more milestones, twists etc? Alas no, all flights took off on time and everyone said farewell again!
Another memorable trip. Well done Mr President and thank you for leading us to such sporting heights.
Wednesday 27th September, 2023
Monday 2nd October, 2023