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Saturday 1st June 2013 ko 11.00

Division 6 Norra Gästrikland

STORVIKS AIF 4 (Sane 7 20 62 Lingvall 31og)

LINGBO IF 1 (Lindqvist 12)

Att 41

Entry & Programme included in hop

During the previous evening’s entertainment Kim Hedwall seemed rather distracted and was on the phone for most of the second half. On the way back to Uppsala, he let the coach party know what had happened.

The scheduled morning fixture was due to be at Gävle GIK FK in the same division but their chairman had phoned to report that the game was off, the opposition being unable to raise a team. He suggested contacting Storviks AIF, so Kim phoned them offering to pay them what he was going to pay Gävle. They agreed at 15 hours notice to produce a teamsheet programme, and in effect take on the hop fixture. It meant a longer drive north, and a rather tight schedule between Storviks and the next game at Hille, but it was a real rabbit from the hat, and very much a feather in Kim’s cap. I knew what Kim was going through after the late postponement on Easter’s Northern Counties East hop.

To get there, we crossed the River Dalälven, and in doing so crossed from the traditional province of Uppland into Norrland; that fact was to be significant later on in the day. Gästrikland is often called the gate to Norrland,the part of northern Sweden  that is traditionally considered scarcely populated and with a terrain dominated by forests, mountains and lakes.

Storvik is a small town of around 2,000 inhabitants and Storviks AIF (the extra “S” is possessive, “Storvik’s team”) are a new side for this season, being an offshoot of the Storviks IF side, currently bottom of the division above.

On arrival at Sportcentrum, it was obvious that they’d made full use of the meagre 15 hours since Kim’s phone call. A programme was available, and a gazebo erected serving drinks and snacks, none of which would have been available at another time. The club tried to give away the coffee and cakes, and I was proud of our party; to a traveller a donation was made for each coffee and cake. It made the good impression on the club that they’d made on us.

A short presentation was made at half time, and it was clear that the club are rather proud of their forward, Ghanian Salum Sane. He’s played at Division 3 level, and had scouts from a higher level watching, but he opted to drop down, and play for fun, at least for now. The club commented that they hoped he’d stay long enough for them to win a few games.

He certainly was the difference between the two sides. His hat trick was well deserved even if the third goal came courtesy of a horrendous goalkeeping error, there were other chances that could easily have gone in. His play off of the ball wasn’t anywhere near as impressive, perhaps that’s where coaches at a higher level could make better use of his undoubted talent.

As visitors we simply enjoyed the warm weather, from an excellent viewing position high on the grass bank, thankful that Kim had pulled a real rabbit from the hat, and that the club were able and willing to supply such wonderful hospitality at such short notice.