Thursday 12th November 2015
Hawke's Bay United
So the 2nd game of the season and the 2nd TV game, a contest between last seasons Grand Finalists (which was won 2-1 by Auckland City).
I don't have Sky and as my hours have changed at work and I now work Thursday mornings, it means I have to find a pub (easy) that will show the game (not so easy). Luckily at this time of year there aren't a lot of other sports on, despite this the local club I choose to watch this in also had people that wanted to watch the cricket and bowls!, luckily they had more than enough TV's. The only down side is that you have to watch it with the sound down.
Hawke's Bay United coach, ex Evertonian Brett Angell, seems to be a coach that is either loved or hated, despite finishing runners up last season several players opted to ply their trade elsewhere, while many of the biggest local club, Napier City Rovers, also did the same. However Angell has assembled a useful looking squad and should be there or thereabouts this season.
So for this game I have the following beers
Hawke's Bay United – Hawke's Bay Independent Brewery Pilsner (5%)
The historical beer of Hawke's Bay was Leopard, it was part of the NZ breweries (Lion) stable and all I can remember about it is that they sponsored Hastings United enough for them to be known as Leopard United in the 1980's. Leopard disappeared in the late 80's or early 90's and Hawke's Bay is better known for its wine's. However there are a couple of breweries. Established in 1995 Hawke's Bay Independent Brewery is one of the older craft brewers in NZ. I selected their Pilsner for this, which I later discovered had won a silver medal at the latest NZ brewers guild awards
Auckland City – Schippers Mistress Pilsner (5%)
A brewery created in 2011 by a bored Photographer, Niels Schipper, based in Mt Eden just down the road from Auckland City's Kiwitea Street.
Watching a game in a pub is always hard, especially when you are the only one properly interested in it and you are also catching up with pals you've not seen for a while, but I managed to see most of it.
Auckland scored early through the exciting Solomon Islander, Micha Lea'alafa. Auckland City dominated possession, but Hawke's Bay defended well and then with 4 minutes to go, it was as if Jacob Spoonley had been listening into our conversation about how I used to play when I was in goal, and he decided to give us an actual demonstration and was caught in the mid-field nowhere near his goal! Allowing ex Auckland City player Matsumoto to lob the ball into an empty net and secure a 1-1 draw
Hawke's Bay Independent Pilsner sells itself as a traditional Czech style pilsner and while it has the clean finish it lacks the expected flavour of their claims. Still a nice beer to drink, would be pretty good on a summer afternoon in the Hawke's Bay (Unfortunately I'm in Wellington where the weather's not so good)
I was expecting much the same from Schippers Mistress Pilsner, but it was different it had much more body and flavour and a bit of a bite to it. Definitely a beer you remember having.
Beer Schippers Mistress Pilsner 3 Hawke's Bay Independent Pilsner 1
Football Auckland City 1 Hawke's Bay United 1
Sunday's TV game is WaiBOP United v Team Wellington (KO 4:35pm)
Other games on Sunday are
Southern United v Waitakere United (KO 2pm) @ Caledonian Ground, Dunedin
Wellington Phoenix v Canterbury United (KO 2pm) @ David Farrington Park, Wellington