Vikki Bunce hammers goal 1 home - the first of six for Wanderers
School's out! Welcome to the new generation...
All credit to GHK Ladies, who managed yesterday, to get a goal against a Dundee Wanderers side that went on a 6-goal fest, spearheaded by goal machine Vikki Bunce and the highly talented youngster, teenager Charlotte Watson. Both teams are populated by school kids, and both teams have changed so much in the last year or so.
For GHK coach, Chris Kane, it was a running commentary, for most of the 70 minutes, directed at his "pupils" on the basics of the game - and they listened and worked hard at the same time; no mean feat considering their inexperience and the pressure they were under from minute one.
The girls from the west end of Glasgow couldn't hold on for long though, and it was Wanderers' second attack of the game, within a few short minutes of the match starting, that produced the first of Scotland internationalist Vikki Bunce's handful of goals. To be fair to the GHK girls, even the best players in the land are guilty of affording ex-GB player Bunce that little bit of space that only she requires to punish you.
And it got worse a few minutes later for GHK after Vikki B took off on one of her trademark solo runs just inside the opposition's half. It would be unfair to call it the parting of the Red Sea, but within seconds she was past three players and turning the last defender, setting herself up at the top of the circle for a reverse stick shot on goal with no one near her. She made no mistake.
By half-time it was 4-1 to Wanderers. But, GHK had got that solitary goal, and it would be unfair and downright patronising to call it a consolation, because they worked hard for it. And after their half-time team talk with coach Kane they came out a visibly more determined team. They did concede two more, but they genuinely tried to get themselves back into the game and spent far more time in Wanderers' half than they had in the first half. In fact, as the sun set, it became distinctly chilly up at GHK's circle with a lot of play down the other end!
But, this was Wanderers' day and their youngsters were brilliant throughout. Picking two, it's no wonder that schoolgirls Emily Dark and Charlotte Watson won Players of the Tournament, handed to them by Scotland internationalist Susan McGilveray, at last weekend's Inter-Districts - they're class acts, and it's fascinating to watch them blending in with their mentors, the likes of Becky Ward, Vikki Bunce, Rachel Osborne, Sam Sangster and Carmin Dow.
Charlotte Watson is physically bigger now compared to just a few months ago and it's added an extra edge to her game. She's a real handful coming through from midfield in attack mode. Oh, and in case we forget, she scored at least two if not three of the goals yesterday!
The final scoreline did not disgrace GHK ladies - it's tough, very tough up in National 1. They should know, they hung on for their lives last season and survived. But, judging by yesterday's hard fought shift, they look like they want more than just survival this season.
Dundee Wanderers Man of the Match: Charlotte Watson