... a bit Suffolk
|we 9 Dec|
Lots of laughter at the Ipswich Cardinals' first practice after lockdown two and interestingly to us at least the first hour was spent on special teams ... no blocking below the waist on kicking plays. New players (especially linemen) and rookies always welcome.
|mo 5 Oct|
At the Ipswich Cardinals new venue in Rushmere despite steady rain with enough wind to make it uncomfortably cold an impressive near fifty players old and new turned out and just one spectator. Some younger newbs unwisely thought shorts and a t-shirt suitable for the conditions and everyone enjoyed the rookie who when the ball came at him unexpectedly batted it away rather than catch it. Know how he feels, we've done similar playing rugby.
|su 9 Aug|
Saddening but not surprisingly the Red Rooster Festival near Thetford has been postponed until next year. Robert Stan Stamper (seen here on the Ipswich Cardinals chain crew entertaining the visiting Bury Saints sideline) at last year's Maverick Festival before dashing off to dance with his daughter told us the 2018 Roosterfest had been brilliant. ♫
|su 26 Jul|
What could be sisters at the Ipswich Cardinals last year added to Suffolk Ladies.
|mo 23 Dec|
Poignant visiting the Ipswich Cardinals yesterday for the first time since owner Ralph Alexander passed away. Despite early rain, Christmas and a very muddy field maybe some 30 players were cheerfully getting colder and muddy. Some of the more direct verbal coaching amused Big Al volunteering as VAL (Voice Activated Lightstand) for the day. Cards first home game next year is 17 May.
|th 15 Aug|
We were surprised and much saddened to learn that Ipswich Cardinals owner and general manager Ralph Alexander has passed away, it seemed to happen so quickly. Our Britball journey started with the Cards and Ralph was always welcoming and we found encouragement in his clear appreciation of our small journalism about his team. He will be very much missed.
|tu 30 Jul|
Sunday it looked like it was going to be an Ipswich Cardinals walkover with two early touch downs against an outnumbered East Kent Mavericks. Approaching the end of the first half the Mavericks recovered their own dropped ball to run it in a TD. This seem to energise the Mavericks and both teams kept swapping TDs with some spectacular often improvised running. With Cards 40-35 Mavericks and minutes to go a completed long bomb from the Mavericks put them at first and goal. The Cards maintained a very impressive four play goal line defence and then twice took the knee dangerously close to their own goal line for a win.
|mo 1 Jul|
Nice to have the refs back yesterday for Ipswich Cardinals 21-07 East Essex Sabres. The Cards' 21 was done the hard way with two failed point after kicks but one safety. The Cards are away to the Norwich Devils next weekend.
|mo 24 Jun|
Annoyingly the diversion for the closed Westerfield level crossing is NOT signed but we still made it to Ipswich Cardinals v Maidstone Pumas yesterday. Surprisingly there were no refs and general manager Ralph Alexander said other games were also without officials, a shortage of refs? Coaches and helpers substituted as officials (with timekeeping by Stan on a stopwatch he had in the car). Very disorientating with no stripes on the field, we were confused where to look. In the end the somewhat outnumbered Pumas who never got going were shut out 29-00.
|mo 22 Apr|
At Ipswich Cardinals 14-14 East Essex Sabres in Thundersley (it's near Southend) a stick holder who didn't get out of the way soon enough has prompted much comment mostly from refs.
|tu 13 Nov|
Ipswich Cardinals rookies and juniors Sunday.
|mo 6 Aug|
Despite unsportsman and dissent/taunting penalties, the ball inexplicably kicked in mid-air, a missed play because of poor comms at the end of the first half, injuries and some highly disputed calls/non-calls late in the game the Ipswich Cardinals played out of their skins with some impressive rushing in roasting temperatures to win 10-07 against visitors Essex Spartans. A very satisfying result for army Captain Christopher Butcher's memorial game as the late Cards player's father Terry Butcher (England soccer captain in the 80s) was at the game. The Cards now meet in the play-offs the Hertfordshire Cheetahs in St Albans Sunday.
|mo 30 Jul|
Though it kept trying to rain yesterday for the Ipswich Cardinals v Norwich Devils in Ipswich the real problem was a swirling wind but it didn't stop long passes or seemingly disrupt kicking though both teams had kicks blocked. A very decent sized crowd for an East Anglian derby made possible by the Devils' return to the league this year. The Cards won 21-14 despite managing 30 yards in penalties on a single play. The Cards at home again next weekend to the Essex Spartans.
|mo 2 Jul|
We weren't optimistic about yesterday's Ipswich Cardinals v London Blitz B because the Cards had lost 55-00 to the Blitz earlier this year. In the event on a roastingly hot day (thankfully with a breeze) the Cards led 10-00 for most of the game. Finally the Blitz offence broke out (they'd been threatening to do it all game) to score two one point converted touchdowns and then on the final play the Cards bungled a reverse fumbling in their own end zone to finish 21-10 ... but there was dancing at half time.
|fr 30 Jun|
After seeing his first american football game three weeks ago at the Ipswich Cardinals Sid said I hadn't realised it's such a family day out. Another family day out this Sunday when the Cards play London Blitz B with singer Lisa Day at half time.
|su 24 Jun|
Ipswich Cardinal training early this year has joined Suffolk Gentleman.
|fr 8 Jun|
The Ipswich Cardinals may have lost their away game at London Blitz B on Sunday but their 2-1 season so far is still an encouraging improvement on the last couple of years. The Cards' first home game of the season 2:30pm kick off this Sunday.
|we 23 May|
Major rule changes for NFL kickoffs and Sunday the Ipswich Cardinals won the re-scheduled away match against the East Essex Sabres 54-48.
|su 15 Apr|
At the end of last season with minutes to go a one point kick would have put the Ipswich Cardinals into overtime against the Essex Spartans ... they went for two and didn't make it. At the start of this season this afternoon with minutes to go kicking the point after put the Cards in the lead ... kicking in the British game can be worryingly wayward. The Cards made a good punt, previously the Spartans had blocked two punts. The punt returner looking like he was hashing it near his own line recovered to make a spectacular 50 yard return. The Cards defence shut the game down and for our first time we saw the Cardinals play victory formation. An excellent game that could have gone the other way and would have been even more exciting if the crowd were more informed about the clock.
|mo 15 Jan|
Yesterday's Ipswich Cardinals second 2018 practice was very encouraging, an excellent turn out of both juniors and seniors and to end the day a full contact scrimmage that was just that. We learnt that a reversing defensive back should try to keep their feet near parallel so it's easier to cut the same way as the receiver they're covering, Optimistic about the approaching season where the Cards will certainly meet the newly returned to the league Norwich Devils.
|fr 20 Oct|
|th 24 Aug|
Congratulations to the Ipswich Cardinals for deservedly winning two of the biennial John Slavin awards.
|mo 7 Aug|
At yesterday's juniors and seniors Ipswich Cardinals v Essex Spartans games we learnt juniors are under 19 and reminded that in college rules kicking directly out of bounds is not a penalty. The Three Chordettes entertained at half times with classy 40s style close harmony that prompted dancing ... limited dancing but definitely dancing. The senior Cards as always were outnumbered, lost players to injury, scored a the ball's still live safety and almost made it a win but in the end 22-21.
|mo 5 Jun|
A light moment before yesterday's Ipswich Cardinals v-East Kent Mavericks game when the visitors failed to shake hands with honourary captain for the day singer Sarah Probert so the referee sent the Kent captains round again:) The Cards were looking competitive and scored first but the Mavericks had some very nippy (and slippery) runners for a Cards 51 to 28 loss.
|sa 15 Apr|
The toilet cubicle we patronised at the Deanes Sports Centre near Rayleigh had a door that passed so close to the toilet bowl that careful planning was needed to get in and out. There was something distasteful looking smeared on a wall and the hand drier didn't work but at reception there was a cheerful young woman and a proper coffee machine plus the Ipswich Cardinals v hosts East Essex Sabres was a cracker.
Regrettably the Sabres' starting quarterback was injured in Q1 and didn't return. After a Cards disallowed touch down (holding ... it's always holding) and two missed field goals and the Sabres getting to yard and goal without result it looked like a nil-nil draw. After the two minute warning an impressive Sabres run took them into the Cards' half, the officials scurried to get another play off and the forward pass was Cards intercepted and run in for the td (a proper journalist would have got the player's name). Very pleased for the Cardinals but sympathy to the Sabres who lost their first game back in the league last week in the final twenty seconds.
|tu 8 Nov|
An absolutely cutting east wind across the Northgate playing field Sunday but a very encouraging 53 seniors and juniors for the Ipswich Cardinals new players session. These American football prospects try out both offensive and defensive drills with just a little padded contact. The Cards are doing it again next Sunday.
|fr 15 Jul|
One of the Ipswich Cardinals' supporters can advise the refs what they're doing wrong in a voice loud enough the whole ground can hear. Sunday just before kick off we heard TESTING! TESTING! 123. There were only some 20 Cards and in the second half they lost to injury the player punting amongst other jobs ... but they stuck at it, you have to admire them.
|th 30 Jun|
The announcer got a penalty at Ipswich Cardinals v Essex Spartans American football Sunday.
|mo 20 Jun|
Yesterday not surprisingly Ipswich Cardinals outnumbered some three to one lost 41-12 to visitors Wembley Stallions. Usual entertaining combination of excellent plays contrasted with fumbled snaps and dropped punt returns. Unintended humour when at a play end pile up a giant lineman cried I can't move! Ref called for a medic before it became apparent he couldn't move because of the bodies on top of him ...
|mo 10 Aug|
|th 2 Jul|
After decades of watching American football on tv saw our first live match Sunday. Not surprisingly being outnumbered at least two to one the Ipswich Cardinals lost to the Wembley Stallions 19-44 but an honourable loss. We were surprised how difficult it is to follow the ball at ground level and in this soccer obsessed country how hit and miss the kicking was. We're looking forward to last match of the season against Bury (St Edmunds) Saints who reputedly are mostly US military.
|mo 6 Oct|
Cecil Martin played for four years as a Philadelphia Eagle in the NFL. Though there may be an element of professional bonhomie in his manner it was a great pleasure meeting him yesterday in Ipswich leaving us a bit stunned we've actually met a one time pro American football player ... even if we're still a bit confused about full/tail backs:) Cecil will be back publicly coaching at the Ipswich Cardinals at the end of next month, if you have any interest in the sport grab the chance.