Petanque-ing in the rain

The final of the Leeds Petanque Tournament was held at Bond Court, Leeds, yesterday (thursday).'Pictured is Alan Swift measuring a close game.
The final of the Leeds Petanque Tournament was held at Bond Court, Leeds, yesterday (thursday).'Pictured is Alan Swift measuring a close game.

If this summer has taught me one thing, it is this: heavy rain is not condusive to good results in a petanque tournament.

Les Miseraboules – the Advertiser’s team in the Saint Michael’s Cup – had made a great start in the first of three league games held at the bouledrome at the top of Montpellier Hill.

We beat Mange Tout Rodney by 13-6 and were left with a feeling of significant confidence for the rest of the tournament. Sadly, it turned out that feeling was misplaced.

Our second match was against FORE!!!, a team made up of members of the Montpellier Petanque Club, which organsied the tournament. We had played a friendly against them two weeks before, following our first competitive match, and lost by just one point.

It is for that reason that I’m going to blame the ridiculous weather conditions for our humiliating 13-6 defeat to FORE!!!. You’ve probably never tried it, but playing petanque while wearing a raincoat belonging to a man who is nearly twice as tall as you is not very easy, especially when the hood is so large you can’t see the coche and the boules are so wet they slide out of your hand as you move.

Despite the rain, we learned some new techniques and tactics and go on to our final league match against Under the Coche with renewed enthusiasm.