I FIND myself in a similar state to that experienced by Chris Lloyd in Friday’s column – feeling like I should write a hard hitting piece about one of the many pressing issues of our time. But while Chris was distracted by the story of a woman killed by shampoo fumes in 1909, I am simply unable to find the energy to wade into anything too serious.

There has much so much political back and forth over the last few weeks that it is exhausting trying to keep up. I’m all Brexited out.

By the time Saturday came round last week, after the palava of Theresa May’s deal/no-deal, Jacob Rees-Mogg’s lame press conference and yet another shouty episode of Question Time, I was worn out.

But instead of a relaxing day doing whatever normal people do of a weekend, I was in Leeds on a hockey pitch facing up to a team of super-keen, super-fit, super-confident top-of-the-league, so-far unbeaten players. And it was 3.30 in the afternoon, when I’m usually ready for a snooze with football scores on in the background.

As always with Northallerton, the club I have played for since I was 14, we are capable of moments of brilliance, and moments of disaster. We don’t really do middle-of-the-road. From the moment the match started, it was clear why the opposition were top of the league, and that we’d be in for a long afternoon. But after five minutes, glory be, we got a goal (and a good goal at that). Our opposition went into hyper-drive, moving the ball, switching play, dragging us out of position. We would win it back, push up, clear our lines, but they kept pinning us into defence.

In my 20-plus years with the club I don’t think I’ve ever seen us play with such focus. Every player did her job, and then some. Tracking back, tackling, hassling and marking with complete commitment. Somehow by playing under the floodlights, we always raise our game. It makes for a Champions League-style atmosphere – not that we’re too deluded about our amateur status.

As the clock ticked onto the 70-minute-mark, Leeds won a penalty corner. The rules of hockey dictate that the corner must still be played, even though time is up. I was in the defensive line, and to a player, I think we agreed that this ball would not get through, no matter what the risk.

Luckily, we didn’t have to do anything reckless, and our ‘keeper saved the day.

The final whistle went with the score at 1-0 to us.

I’m not ashamed to say that after the handshakes with the opposition (who were very gracious in defeat) and umpires we went a bit giddy.

Anyone who doesn’t understand how we lurch from glory to despair and know nothing in between would’ve thought we either hadn’t won a match in a long time, or that we’d just secured an Olympic gold medal. We didn’t care.

It reminded me why I give up my Saturdays to the game, and of the power of sport to thrill and unite.

And if Theresa May wants some high-level tactical advice in the coming days, she could probably do worse than listen to one of our team talks. If anyone knows about battling through against the odds, it’s us.