Game Day Review

Today we played our first competitive fixtures, and it was a great day from start to finish. Okay, so the slight detour to take in the stunning scenery of the cooling towers near to East Midlands Parkway wasn’t great (I’ll admit, that was entirely due to me misreading the map), but once we were there it was a great day. We played three games in total, one against a team from the University of Lincoln and two against teams from Nottingham University. We attacked the first game with great intensity, commitment and no shortage of skill, and came away with a strong victory. The second game was a slightly different proposition – there was plenty of effort, but the things we were trying that worked well in the first game didn’t seem to come off so well in the second, and ended up in defeat. We then faced the prospect of picking ourselves up straight away for the next match, and so it was a credit to everyone involved that after an extremely tight first 15 minutes we managed to pull away and secure our second victory of the afternoon. Everyone played their part, and the less experienced players came on strongly during the afternoon, especially in defence.

I’d like to take this opportunity to once again thank Nottingham University for hosting the games, and also to the University of Lincoln for coming down to play too. They were three tough, hard-fought games, and after two months doing nothing but training, it was exactly what we needed as a club. Hopefully these will be just the first of many encounters between the teams in the years to come.

I for one cannot wait to get back on the court again and play some more competitive fixtures, so we’ll work hard to get some further fixtures confirmed asap. In the meantime, we’ll look to bring that same intensity to our training sessions as we did for the two sessions last week. So, if you didn’t come along today, we not pop down on Thursday night? It’ll be the best £1.50 you spend all week, guaranteed.

Colin.

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Confirmation of Sunday’s Details

Just to confirm the arrangements for Sunday – if everyone can meet outside the sports centre at 12 and bring with them a blue top (preferrably light/sky blue) and a white top. If you’re not driving, bring £3 to pay towards the fuel costs of those that are. For anyone who hasn’t been to a session this week, we do still have a couple more spaces available, but if you do want to play, please let us know by the end of Friday at the latest. We don’t want to have people turning up that we are unable to provide transport for. Look forward to seeing you all on Sunday!

Colin.

First Match Details

First Match Details, Please Read

Our first match is scheduled for Sunday 28th October. This will be a men’s fixture, with our first women’s match scheduled for the end of November, giving us time to hopefully recruit a few extra players. Anyone who has attended sessions is welcome to play, as we are keen to give match experience to as many people as possible.

The hall we are playing in is booked from 13:00-17:00, and we will be playing a series of slightly shorter games against Nottingham and Lincoln. Nottingham managed to get the hall for free, so the only costs are the transport costs. The venue is Sutton Bonington Sports Centre, College Road, Sutton Bonington, LE12 5RD. It is just off the M1, so the journey shouldn’t take much more than 45 minutes. Anybody who takes other people in their car will be reimbursed fuel costs.

In terms of kit, there is a possibility we will have a kit sorted by next Sunday, but in the more likely scenario that we don’t, could everyone please bring with them a blue top (preferably light/sky blue) and a white top.

In terms of transport, the idea is to meet at Coventry Sports Centre and those that have cars to give lifts to everyone who doesn’t. Ideally we would all meet up at 12, but since some of you have already told me that is too early, could everyone who wants to play please COMMENT on this post and provide the FOLLOWING INFORMATION – What is the earliest time you are able to get to Coventry Sports Centre? Do you drive and have access to a car? If so, how many seats does the car have?

Once I have this information I will organise who will be giving lifts to whom, and what time everyone needs be at Coventry Sports Centre for. Since the court is booked for 4 hours those who arrive later will still get a reasonable amount of game time.

Coventry Handball Club in Association with Sports Active

First things first, I’d like to thank everyone who turned up last night. The weather was truly awful but attendance was still excellent, and the quality of the play was easily the highest we’ve had so far. People now seem keen to really work on the defensive side of the game, and we’ll do some work on that during next Thursdays session. We’ll also look to book a specialist skills session prior to our first match – we’ll send out details once everything is confirmed, but it is likely to be on either Monday 22nd or Tuesday 23rd October, with the match the following Sunday afternoon. Again, we’ll send out full details about the match once everything is fully confirmed.

However, the main purpose of this post was to let you know that we’ve agreed a deal to run our Thursday night sessions in partnership with Coventry University’s Sports Active scheme. It’s a scheme that covers a range of sports, and is open to the general public alongside Coventry University students. You can find further details about the scheme via www.coventry.ac.uk/sport .

In terms of the content of the session, nothing will change. We still have full control over how we use our time, and as always we’ll allocate that time however you want us to allocate that time. People generally seem fine with the 30 minutes skills, 30 minutes matches split, but if you’d rather we split the session in a different way, we’re happy to listen to suggestions. And as always if you feel that there’s a specific aspect of the sport you’d like to spend more time on, let us know.

The major difference is the cost. Thursday night sessions will now cost £1.50, and will still be on a pay-as-you-play basis. There’s also a loyalty card scheme that entitles you to free sessions after attend so many sessions, and these sessions cover all of the Sports Active sessions, not just our Handball sessions. In return, all you have to do is fill out a quick personal details form and health questionnaire the first session you attend, and then at every session we will also have to take a register of attendance.

I think that £1.50 for an hour’s Handball offers exceptional value for money, so if you’ve never played before, now is the perfect time to start. Or perhaps if you came to some of our early sessions but haven’t been for a few weeks, this is a great chance to get involved again.

By Colin Littlewood, Chair of Coventry Handball Club.

Women’s Session, Tuesday 16th October

Whilst we have been delighted with the overall progress of our club over the past month or so, there is one area of the club that we have been desperate to address – the women’s team. We’re really keen to be able to field a strong women’s team in Coventry, and the talent and enthusiasm is definitely there judging from what we’ve witnessed at the mixed sessions we’ve run to date. However, the problem has been that, although we’ve had enough girls attend at least one session to form a team, we haven’t been able to get everyone there on the same night. This has meant that the girls have always been in the numerical minority at sessions, hindering any efforts to focus on relevant skills training and providing appropriate opposition in matches.

We’re optimistic that a women’s only session will help to address this, providing those with some previous Handball the opportunity to practice skills and play games with and against other girls. We also think this session provides the perfect opportunity for those who have played Handball before the opportunity to try the sport. So, in recognition of this fact and to try to attract as many girls to our session as possible, the session will cost £1 each. If you’ve never come to a session before, why not bring some friends with you and give the sport a go? After all, there is a reason why Handball is the most played team sport amongst women in mainland Europe.

So, the all important details:

Date – Thursday 16th October

Time – 20:30-21:30

Venue – Coventry Sports Centre (CV1 5RY), Courts 1-4 (if you’ve never been before, don’t worry, we’ll have someone in the lobby to show you up to the court)

Cost – £1 per person

Experience – All abilities welcome

Open to – Women, 18+

Our usual sessions will still run on Thursday nights, and will still be open to both men and women. As things stand we are running this women’s only session as a one-off, though if we can attract enough new players and the demand is there we would definitely be prepared to run it as a regular session, either on Tuesdays or on a different day if that works better for everyone. So, if you know anyone who might be interested in giving Handball a go, send them this way, and if you have any queries or want further information please email coventryhandball@gmail.com .

By Colin Littlewood, Chair of Coventry Handball Club.

Coventry Handball Club – Looking For Sponsorship

My behind-the-scenes tasks are currently many and varied. I’ve been looking to arrange fixtures, took a trip down to town to buy some cones so we can do some new and exciting drills and am organising our club’s first social (Sunday 14th October at the Coventry Blaze v Nottingham Panthers ice hockey game – further details can be found on the Facebook page www.facebook.com/CoventryHandball). However, the main focus of my time has been on sponsorship. Since we’re moving towards playing our first games fairly soon, a kit is now a priority. It’s always amazing the psychological lift you get before a match if you look the part, and therefore we are particularly keen to get a sponsor on board to help us achieve this goal.

I’ve created our sponsorship pitch, and now I’m faced with the task of emailing any and every business I think might be interested in sponsoring us. However, whilst I’m doing that, if anybody whose reading this now either would be interested in sponsoring us or knows somebody who might, please email coventryhandball@gmail.com . The sponsorship would be of huge benefit to our club, and in return we think we offer an exciting opportunity for sponsors – the opportunity to be a part of one of the post-Olympics legacy success stories in Coventry. Hopefully we’ll hear from you soon!

Colin Littlewood, Chair of Coventry Handball Club.