Guanches aim for gold

LAS GALLETAS is nurturing a sporting revolution. Arona’s popular fishing village became a mecca for inline hockey players last weekend as the National Silver League arrived for 12 games, featuring eight teams from across Spain.

For home side Tenerife Guanches, it was a chance to boost their credentials for promotion to the elite Gold League.

Think ice hockey, without ice, and your halfway to understanding the excitement, skill, and power of the sport.

Instead of blades, skaters propel themselves with four inline wheels, and the clock stops with breaks in play to ensure two full periods of 20 minutes.

There was a real buzz that spilled over outside the sports hall to the extra-tented changing rooms, draped in and out with drying kit as players caught their breath in a busy schedule.

The league’s unique answer to uniting teams from mainland Spain, and its furthest outpost of Tenerife, is for each club to host three rounds of fixtures over a weekend.

The Las Galletas gathering had games from noon until 9.15pm on Saturday, finishing with a planned 9am Sunday start to squeeze in the last four games in plenty of time for teams to fly home.

Nature threw a bit of a spanner in the works with Sunday’s storms, which forced the cancellation of the final games in the leaky sports hall.

Tenerife Guanches (named after the original warrior tribes of the island) looked in good form when they opened their account with an 11-3 victory over Lostregos Lucos.

Coming back from a 2-1 deficit to level at the end of the first half, Guanches pulled clear with some well-worked team plays.

They had a bigger squad than their rivals, whose beleaguered net-minder had no back-up to call on from the bench.

Two-minute, sin-bin penalties were few and far between, and fighting is not tolerated, despite the hard-fought play.

There was a mix of ages and backgrounds in the Tenerife team, with two Slovakian players, including latest signing Matej Raduskovsky, adding experience from their home leagues.

The team had plenty of young players watching in club T-shirts, while, outside, near the makeshift kit camp, several youngsters scrimmaged for fun.

The Saturday evening game brought Tenerife a 4-0 win over Catalan’s SAB Tucans ASME team. Those victories put Tenerife joint-top of the league with 28 points, giving them a great shot at promotion.

There’s definitely a growing interest surrounding inline hockey in Tenerife, and the Guanches are always looking for new recruits.

The website is a good place to obtain more details.

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Posted by on Mar 2 2018. Filed under Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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