Perhaps it was rigged from the start.
With a prefect away, and another in a cast it was with a sense of false hope and existential inevitability that the prefects of Otago Boys’ took the court against St Hilda's in a game of netball. Piped on gallantly by Hunter Burgess and capably coached by the vocal Ned Flannery, the prefects took their positions in a brand new kit of ageing skirts 5 sizes too small.
The first quarter was a tale of what might have been. Osasa and Eric demonstrated their full potential as basketball players (but not necessarily netballers). Sam absolutely clamped down in the defensive circle and Hamish and Thomas ran loops around the mid-court. We ended the first quarter several goals in the lead and with a massive psychological advantage, and in the spirit of fairness made several rash substitutions.
In all great stories, the second act is where the wheels fall off. Likewise, the middle two quarters of the game were a complete train wreck for the fine prefects of Otago Boys’. The St Hilda’s team resorted to their plan B - a series of horrible refereeing decisions that made Tim Donaghy and the NBA betting ring look like chumps. Adding more fuel to the fire, half of those calls were made by a blood relation of our esteemed coach. Clearly, the netball court is not a place to resolve a family dispute.
Unfortunately, we left ourselves with too much of a mountain to climb in the last quarter. Respect is due to St Hilda’s - the tactically better team on the day - for a competitive game of netball and entertaining rivalry. We’ll get ‘em next year.
Final Score: 23-27 to St Hilda’s.