WH&E L1 1 : 5 Teddington 2

First socially distanced selfie of the season!First match of the season was nearly cancelled due to a lack of available pitch until our ‘home’ game was 1.5 hrs from home.

Unfortunately, some of us forgot how long it took to get to Teddington and myself and Reanne Umali were running into the car park just as the whistle went to start the match. Thank you to Pippa Deane and Charlotte for playing for us after the 2s match was cancelled or else we’d have started with 9!

The match started with a bang as it was 2-1 to Teddington in less than 10 minutes. Their goals were by short corners and ours was by Karen Goode, set up by Beth Deane.

The first half continued to be a bit tricky as we ended up going down 4-1.

We continued fighting and making chances for ourselves but were unable to convert. The second half was a 1-0 loss to make the total score 5-1 to Teddington.

We’re not overly disappointed due to the fact that the opposition have just been relegated from South, we haven’t been able to train on a full sized pitch, and lastly we were just pleased to be allowed to play together again and really enjoyed it!

Shout out to Lucy and Nic Cohen who played their first match with us on their birthday and thank you to Lisa Jobson for coming all the way to umpire!

DotD to Pippa for passing to the opposition during a hit out and then defending it with both feet in the D 🤣

PotM to Mia for great perseverance and movement up and down the pitch.


WH&E M1 2 : 2 Southgate 3A

First league game of the season with an unusual 14 man squad, Winchmore made the short trip to Southgate for our local derby. With this little pandemic going on we have found ourselves currently without a pitch, so the fixture was reversed…as was the age demographic – the opposition certainly had youth on their side as well as a match day coach! We thought we might get taught a lesson by year 6. But as the saying goes…old age and treachery will always beat youth and exuberance…was that to be the case today…? Well almost, but it definitely should have been!

The game started brightly, a few rusty passes as to be expected with the first league game but overall we found ourselves to be on top having the better of the chances and narrowly missing at the back post to go one up. The team kept compact using the short pass to great effect with some good off the ball movement. However, against the run of play and without really threatening our D, Southgate earned themselves a short corner and with a low drag to the bottom corner went one up. Winchmore did pull a goal back almost immediately but the umpire had judged Colin “van Basten” to chest and volley the ball into the top corner, so ruled it out.

Another rare attack by Southgate and a mishit shot on goal wrong-footed the keeper and Winchmore found themselves two down. But another good patch of play by Winchmore and we earned a short corner; Colin van Basten coolly slotting it into the bottom right corner. The order of the aforementioned events may or may not be correct but as author I’m “basing this on a true story” but it was definitely 2-1 at half time. I think somebody might also have got a green card in the first half for flirting with the opposition, but I promised Matt I wouldn’t mention it.

Much like the first half Winchmore found themselves on top for most of the second, some great patient play in the midfield was finished with a through ball from Stuart and the faintest of touches from Colin van Basten to bypass the keeper and it was 2-2. The scoreline remained for the rest of the game although we did survive an onslaught of pressure in the last ten minutes with some tired legs, and another player falling foul to the card game… Jason…

This was a very determined team performance and something to build on and take into next week’s game; a bit of match sharpness in front of goal and this would have been a very different result.

MOTM was a tie this week with Colin and Lopez sharing the accolade.


WH&E M2 2 : 2 St Albans 9

The men’s 2s headed to St Albans for their opening league game, without the luxury of any preseason friendlies to prepare.

There were strong performances from the three defenders, Joe Small, John Symons and Ellis Cohen, and they largely had the St Albans attack contained – but some lucky breaks in front of goal saw the opposition go 1-0, and 2-1 up – the second after a green card for Joe for questioning the umpires’ decisions (albeit extremely politely).  A mazy dribble from Dom saw our first equalizer, and some luck of our own when Thomas C’s shot was deflected by an unfortunate defender through his keepers legs saw our second.

Despite strong pressing at the end, we couldn’t score the deciding goal, and so an entertaining first game of the season ended in a 2-2 draw for the men’s 2s.   Good performances from all the youngsters, linking up well, but just lacking the final killer pass or dribble into the D. There was also a ranging performance on his debut from Johnny Molloy, putting in tackles and runs in all areas of the opposition half despite the unfamiliar environment (apparently he’s used to playing hockey on a unicycle!).

With Dom’s strong presence on the pitch to help the youngsters (thank you Dom!) this perhaps felt like a chance missed – but plenty of rust removed, and some seniors to return next week, so onwards and upwards. There’s always the chance the captain might run a bit more too, if he hasn’t played another sport in the morning…

Man of the Match – Ellis Cohen.


No match this week for the Ladies 2s

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It has finally happened – England Hockey has announced that stage 4 of its Return to Play Roadmap can begin. This is the next step along the road to returning to normal playing conditions and very welcome news as we approach the new season. As a club and section, we are working hard to ensure that everyone joining us for hockey sessions is safeguarded.

In order to protect our members, we must all adhere to some simple rules:

  • Every player must sign the COVID consent form before their first training session back. This can be found on the England Hockey website (where there is plenty of further information) or directly by following this link.
  • Every player must also now “check-in” whenever using any of our club pitches – the MUGA, Aylward and Southbury. This is done via a QR code which can be scanned at the entrance to each facility, and then it automatically opens a simple form in Teamo which allows you to confirm that you are symptom free and aware of the risks of participation. Information will be stored for 21 days, as per UK guidelines, where after, it will be permanently deleted.
  • We are happy to announce that our MUGA training slots are no longer limited by numbers. We are still asking that groups keep to a maximum of 12 players on the playing area at any one time to allow for safe play and social distancing during and between training drills when possible. However, other players are welcome to take advantage of the space around the playing area to work on their fitness.
  • As we go through these difficult times, we are asking players to take extra precautions when playing. This includes social distancing before and after sessions, not touching the balls with your hands or anyone else’s equipment. We also strongly suggest that you do not share lifts with any other player outside your household.
  • After each session, we will be sanitizing the balls and cones using sanitizing spray. We also ask that every player cleans their kit and equipment and leaves them for a minimum of 72 hours. Although the club is working to ensure that hand sanitizing stations are in place, we also suggest that players carry their own hand sanitizer to use before and after sessions.

The attached infographic provides a nice summary of the current guidance. Keep watching for further information when we return to full pitch training and then matches. If you want any more information or have any questions, please contact our COVID Officer – Gemma Luckman at welfare.whehockey@gmail.com or go to the England hockey advice page.

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We are delighted to be finally getting back on the hockey pitch, albeit in a socially distanced form. In line with England Hockey’s “Stage 2” of the Getting Back on the Pitch programme, we are now able to use the Multi-Use Games Area (a.k.a. the MUGA) at the club in groups of up to 6 people, and there are already regular groups using the opportunity to practice their skills and improve their fitness ahead of the new season.

Pass and move

Keeping in mind the key requirement to retain 2m social distancing (unless from the same household), the following activities all work well:

  • Basic skills training (hitting, trapping, passing, etc)
  • Close control and dribbling
  • Shooting practice and deflections
  • Goalkeeping training
  • 2/3-a-side non-contact (no tackling) games and drills

Contact your team captain or a committee member to find out how to book the MUGA for your own socially-distanced practice session.

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WH&E M1 4 : 1 Bishops Stortford M3

Late cancellation of events meant we had a last-minute complement of 11 players with Jake Sumner joining us. Onwards to Bishop Stortford.

A very good start with an early goal after some nice passing moves finished off neatly by Luke Trevill.

Goals then dried up but possession and passing remained reasonable although the early goal led to some complacency. Bishops Stortford made some breaks and earned a couple of short corners. 1-0 up at half time.

We pulled ourselves together and decided to up the intensity. Asher and Harry dropped into midfield allowing Colin to push up. Colin earned himself a goal and supported Jake and Luke up front. Luke smartly finished twice in the second half to complete his hat trick.

Stortford finally piled on some pressure with help from the umpires – green for Matt followed by yellow for Dom, a few dodgy short corners too. Eventually a goal line foot at a short corner led to a penalty stroke. Jim who had been strong in goal came close but Bishops Stortford undeservedly scored from the flick.

Good result. Final score 4-1 win.


WH&E L1 0 : 2 Old Merchant Taylors L1

WK22L1So bottom of the league you say?
A win or draw puts us in safety you say?
11 players you say?
Well you’ve got it in the bag then, right?
Wrong!

3 players down for the count with coronavirus knocking on their doors meant we were down to 8. But don’t you worry, we had 2 players from the 2s, no wait, make that 1. So 9…

The ladies 1s showed exactly what hard work and team spirit is this week. No one dropped their heads no one gave up and no one stopped believing we could win this against 12.

Karen played like she was possessed, the lone striker upfront through on goal, yes it’s in! No wait, she shoulder-barged the defender to play the ball, no goal. Then with 5 or so minutes of a tough half OMT snuck one in. But it didn’t end there; second half starts Karen again playing possessed (claiming she’s sick too but not coronavirus) made the run of a lifetime and with Karen Goode with her we looked to equalise….NO it just missed the goal, hitting the side netting…then Sula decided to crawl on the floor and do a backwards roll, it was beautiful and an incredible display of acrobatics 😂

A 2nd one slipped in as they finally realised that 11 v 9 meant they could overrun us in defence, somewhere along the way Caroline Briers taking a stick in face, but not to let the team down she soldiered on.

Some dodgy decisions by a guy in yellow meant Sam ended up off the pitch with a green for not taking the opposition player out…

In true Ladies 1s style we ended on a defensive short corner defended well and keeping the score at 2-0. A 10th player would have made all the difference, stretching their defence to breaking point, a full team would have been a certain win.

MotM – Karen Gray – for playing 3 positions at once and doing it amazingly

DotD/PotP – Karen Gray – trying to get herself a green at the same time as Sam by shouting “seriously!!!” As loudly as possible…

A tough fight, coronavirus the ultimate winner…


WH&E L2 0 : 5 Teddington L6

WK22L2Despite being a bit thin on the ground (the umpire asked if we were waiting for another car🤣) we had a great game. Everyone played excellently and Teddington were frustrated that they couldn’t dominate as they would expect to against 8.

Unfortunately though a 5-0 loss sees them leapfrog us in to 2nd and we ended the day in 4th.

Special mentions to Pippa Deane and Erin at the back and Romy in goal for clearing far more than they let in and of course Kate Smith for being everywhere as usual!


WH&E M2 1 : 9 Hertford M4

Continuing the theme of playing hockey with fewer than 11 players, the men’s 2s lined up against a strong Hertford 4s with 10 after a late injury.

They were a strong team, well organised, and especially strong in attack. Our young centre midfield pairing (Haydn and Ellis) did a great job, launching us on some strong counter attacks, whilst Balazs did an equally sterling job in goal limiting the damage.

We did get a few short corners, and from one of them Huw got his first ever goal in competitive hockey, with his strike skimming the top of the backboard.

The second half started well, with Winchmore firmly on top and providing a lot of threat, but sadly no goals. Later on we got a bit tired and they came back strong. The final score was 9-1 but a decent performance by a young team in a tough league.

MOTM: Haydn dominating midfield. Nice stuff.

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