By Neil Turrell

Hills Hawks FC, the proud local football club playing out of Hayes Park, has been running with a new initiative over the past two years and founded a men’s over 35 social soccer competition. The six-a-side comp plays at Hayes Park on a Saturday afternoon following junior soccer. It is mostly made up of locals from the Galston, Dural, Arcadia and Glenorie district.

The competition rides on the long-term success of the Women’s social comp, which plays next door at the same time on a Saturday afternoon, and has been going for more than ten years. The comp is open to all, regardless of skill and fitness levels, and has seen the footballing debuts of quite a few players who had never kicked a ball before.

The first round in April 2018 was noteworthy for the number of players who were wearing boots stored in the garage for fifteen years, and people who had clearly not run since high school falling over the deceptively flat ground of Hayes Park.

Of particular note was the first ever throw-in by the long-time groundskeeper for the Hills Hawks, who threw in the ball as well as himself, and ended up nose-first in the mud much to everyone’s amusement.While the standard of soccer is reasonably high for a bunch of middle-aged blokes, the social aspect of the afternoons is what draws people back to the game.

After a solid hit-out against friends and acquaintances, the entire crew generally get together and have a beer or two, as well as a sausage sandwich if the BBQ is fired up. As most players have children or teenagers playing in the local comp anyway, many stick around to watch the dads battle it out on the field, and there is always a crowd of wives, partners, family members and general well-wishers on the sideline – who in all honesty seem to be more interested in chatting, sharing cheese platters and drinking champagne than they do in watching overweight blokes run around after a football.The club is proud of the early success of the O35s men’s social competition, and is looking to expand from four to six teams in 2020.

If you are a local who is looking for something fun to do on a Saturday afternoon; an ex-player whose knees can’t handle 90 minutes any more; or just interested in getting a bit of fitness, meeting new people and having a laugh – get in touch with the club, or sign up today at: https://www.hillshawksfc.com/