Week 23: With a morning of is it on or is it off and a flurry of Whattsapp activity the men’s 1xi headed up to Hitchin for their game against Blueharts 4th XI. In the confusion, Stuart forgot his hockey bag (yes the whole bag). Thankfully he was prepared for his own lack of preparedness by leaving a spare pair of shin guards in the boot and Jimbo helped out with a stick.
On to the game in cold conditions. Blueharts nearer the bottom end of the table had a suspiciously strong looking team and threatened early on. However, WHE found their composure and came back into the game with excellent distribution from the back by Jimbo.
The ever sprightly Tim Mall harrassed the defence supported by Jake and Harry Stone. In the end a superb solo bit of play found Tim on the score sheet again. There was strong defence from WHE from midfield through to the back line. Harry Franks even bravely deflecting a shot from goal with his face (ouch). Matt Dray kept the fast wing play down their right quiet.
In midfield the ever young John Lappin harried and challenged with some probing balls forward. On the right Rafi was putting in good work and feeding well through to the forwards. As ever Adam Machray marshalled the midfield brilliantly and tirelessly.
The rolling of subs worked really well with Joe Turmaine bringing yet another dimension to our play that panicked the opposition. Simon Gatland continued his comeback with a solid performance covering for the injured Harry Franks.
A close affair continued into the second half but again a solo skill passage stripped the opposition of their dignity and another goal. 2-0 but the pumped up Blueharts were not finished. It’s fair to say they had large amounts of possession but WHE did well to disrupt then threaten on the counter.
A hairy last 10 minutes so stoic defence from the whole team including clearing several short corners. All but as Blueharts finally diverted one in. Travelling in the weather and getting ahead we were not to be denied and on top some fine saves from Josh saw us through.
Well done everyone.
Beast from the East 2.0 couldn’t stop the ladies 1s from playing today against teddington. Missing quite a few players we bumped two defenders into midfield and started well sneaking a goal from Caroline Briers just before the half time whistle. Safety looked that little bit closer… it wasn’t to be though as teddington managed an equaliser and scored 3 more quickly with about 15 minutes to go.
A massive thank you to Lucky Charlotte and Pippa Deane for playing and to Charlotte Ellingham for stepping in this week in the worst weather conditions with Lisa Jobson cheering on from the sidelines.
With West Hampstead drawing against Staines we need to win and draw in our two next week to stay safe! Any and all support will be welcome both Saturday at 12 and Sunday at 10 at aylward next week!!!
If only the beast had roared a bit louder…
A snow dusted pitch and icy cold winds were not enough to stop the M2s continuing their push for promotion against a transformed Luton side. Winchmore started solidly and dominated the opening 10 mins before Leo scored the first goal, slotting past the oncoming keeper after a neat move through the middle. The lead was then doubled when Dominic cut across the top of the Luton D and crashed the ball into the bottom right corner. However, in the closing exchanges of the first half, Luton were back in the game with a well struck penalty corner squeezing past the defence.
Another half-time motivational speech (bollocking) from Grant got Winchmore back together, and in a tight second half it was Winchmore who kept their heads together and remained strong in defence, leaving man of the match Leo to dance round the Luton keeper and neatly slot home on reverse stick to put the game safe at 3-1.
A battling performance in awful conditions, and another win to keep the dream alive! Many thanks to Dipak and Chris Moran for umpiring. One game left next week against top of the league Southgate Tankards Y…and we can still do it. Game on!