WH&E M1 1 : 2 Hertford M2

A near miss for the men's 1sIt was back to reasonably familiar territory, certainly for the older players, for this match against Hertford 2s at Southbury Leisure Centre.

The Men’s 1s had 14 players again and a clear idea of how to deploy the subs with a now conventional midfield switch for the first half but a rapid rotation of forwards for planned whirlwind attacks in the second.

Hertford tend to deploy well-organised and well-drilled teams, but Winchmore hoped to translate home advantage to build on a reasonable, opening draw the previous week and secure an early league win.

It was not to be. Superior organisation and pressing in the first part of the first half were engineered from the back by Stuart Carrick, while off-field Jake Sumner brandished a master plan of written instructions and appropriately Machiavellian secret formations.

Yet quick confident passing across midfield and high pressing were not matched by astute final balls. Passes sometimes lacked a little bit of speed on the damp surface and once again the side perhaps may need a hockey clinic to remember how to be more clinical in front of goal.

Having failed to press the advantage, a few gaps, a few missed balls and Winchmore invited pressure, which eventually led to a break on the team’s left flank and a Hertford goal from a short corner. Admittedly the umpire must have believed that one of those poltergeists which Enfield is famous for had hurled Matt Dray to the ground…🤔

James Gatting had to make a few saves but given the strong start it should not have come to that. The first half ended with Winchmore remaining one nil down.

The half-time talk saw the captain and several other players assert that we should simply not be behind.

Indeed, for large periods of the second half, Winchmore seemed poised to do something about that. The opposition goal came under siege. Whether the planned whirlwind blew, Winchmore saw a succession of short corners, a wide selection of strategies were tried out with the opposition goalkeeper spending more time on the ground than on his feet, though he was capable of frustrating at least two attempts to lift the ball over him and as many as a dozen follow up shots.

Alas, one break, saw Hertford score again and from then it appeared that Winchmore had left it too late to stage a revival.

Six minutes from time, a goal came from who else but Colin Foad – later to receive not one but two cups in a salubrious awards ceremony in the rain down by the side of the leisure centre (😂). The goal was a suitability wily number, side on to goal on the reverse and one that finally placed the ball to the side of the keeper, not one thumped into his pads.

The team must find a way to feed better balls to Foad, and/or the supporting cast must score more themselves, otherwise Saturday nights in north London will continue to be haunted by matches that ‘should have been won’.

MOTM: Michael Dutnall for an all round stellar performance


WH&E L2 1 : 8 BA Hayes L1

Ladies 2nd XIWe put into practise the saying “many hands make light work” by setting up our new/old home pitch from rolling goals in place to inspecting a questionable surface (but very grateful to have a home!). We were ready.

After a thumbs up from the umpires the whistle was blown. BA Hayes started well and soon scored after several attempts of getting through our handy defence. Romily almost got her finger tips on it (or did someone else…!). Unfortunately we were 4-0 down at half time after Lisa Jobson handed them an own goal and a harsh flick given after a clearance from Gem Louise.

After refuelling on chocolate fingers (oh wait, no squashies) we came out fighting. We had some great attacking play with short sharp passes eventually converting into an assisted goal by Lucky Charlotte and yes, first goal on the scoreboard for Abbi!

Final score was a loss of 1-8 but played well as a team despite several injuries during the match, with a ball to Louise’s head and a fractured thumb for our very own captain thumbellina Pippa Deane we can take many positives from the match…..

Thumbs up all round!


WH&E M2 1 : 2 Letchworth M6

The enticing prospect of a 5pm start, away at Letchworth, left the Men’s 2s with a bare 11 to take on Letchworth 6s. Those 11 turned in a strong performance, with solid defending, good link-up play and runs, but just an inability to translate pressure into goals.

There was controversy for the first goal, with the Winchmore team convinced it had gone off the back line, but the umpire less so, and old comrade Grant, playing for the opposition, waiting to put it in from 2 yards out. The umpire wasn’t willing to change his decision, however nicely Joe asked (🤔), leaving us 1-0 down at half time, and temporarily playing with 10.

But a lovely break by Tom P down the wing and a cross from the byline saw Johnny Molloy put in the equalizer and the game was back on… With players on both sides tiring, there was more space in the middle, and more breaks and subsequent short corners for Winchmore, but no conversion. And sadly, at the other end, a late, and rare, short corner saw Letchworth take the lead again, with Guy just unable to keep it out at the post.

Lots of positives to take away – I’d say at least half the team put in one of their best performances I’ve seen – and high hopes for our first home game of the season next week.


WH&E L1 0 : 9 Ashford L1

The day started off with 2 broken down cars, 2 niggling injuries, and 1 driver not making it to the match at all!

That left us with 11 players and no subs!

Ashford were really well drilled and very fast. They came at us strong from the off and scored a few goals in the first half. Nic was making some amazing saves at the back and our defence was doing a lot of work to defend the goal as much as possible whilst unfortunately up front we weren’t able to convert our short corner or other chances.

In the 2nd half, Ashford scored less goals than the first and we had more attacking short corners and more chances but were unable to convert again. We fought until the very last moment and the undisclosed scoreline definitely does not reflect the level of hockey we played but today wasn’t our day.

Player of the match to Nic in goal who made many crucial saves including some amazing stick saves. Honourable mentions to the defensive line and particularly Charlotte Ellingham whom the umpire praised for having one of the most powerful hits from the back he’d seen!

Dick of the day to Beth Deane for stealing Mia’s stick, making Mia think she’d left it at Ashford!

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WH&E L1 0 : 1 Hendon & Mill Hill L1

The ladies 1s woke up early on Saturday morning to play Hendon and Mill Hill at Ashmole. Big thanks to the lovely Charlotte and Michelle for stepping up as some of our regulars were unable to play. After the first 10 minutes we were awake and played an evenly matched 1st half with a few brilliant scoring opportunities and some solid defending. Great running from Helen, Charlotte and Michelle up front gave us a few breakaways and good control by Sam and the Karen sandwich made sure that the ball was well played through the midfield.

The second half looked to be just as evenly matched, although slightly more aggressive with one of their opponents questioning “what sport were we playing?” as she clearly forgot when trying to take the body before the ball. We had some great scoring opportunities in the second half, a brilliantly executed short corner that T almost deflected in and a remarkable save from their keeper saved what would have been a beaut goal from Charlotte. Team defence stayed strong with T and Sarah having some great clearances and Mia being strong in the middle to pick it up and dribble out to safety.

Then in the last 5 minutes, Chris saved a straight shot from a short corner and a goal mouth scramble ensued…. somehow after a few pinball deflections the ball ended up in our net. It was a close game but in true Ladies 1’s fashion, the luck wasn’t on our side. Player of the match to Mia for great dribbling through the middle and great passing out wide (honourable mentions to Charlotte, Michelle) and POTP goes to … Michelle for being down on the pitch more than me?


WH&E L2 0 : 0 BA Hayes L2

We should have won.

That is all.


WH&E M2 2 : 6 Bedford Vets

The men’s 2s battled hard in a game that was much closer than the scoreline suggests. Neat passing in triangles, good possession and a pretty even game with the score 3-2 to Bedford at half time, after goals for Zak and Guy. But the experience of the Vets showed in the end, with 3 more goals scored towards the end of the game leaving Winchmore deflated, but with a few lessons well learned.


WH&E M1 1 : 8 Broxbourne M3

Adam scored 1. Nothing else worthy of mention!

 

 

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WH&E M1 3 : 0 Southgate Adelaide M1

This week the M1s took the short trip away to be hosted by Southgate Adelaide. Hopeful of picking up their first points of the season against the newly promoted opposition, Winchmore got off to a strong start with some good possession and movement up the wings. After some quick movement of the ball up the pitch, it was not long before Joe Turmaine found himself in a shooting position from brother Sam’s pass and he ended the move with a clinical finish into the bottom right corner.

Southgate Adelaide, struggling to maintain possession, found themselves getting picked off in the middle of the park through the constant hassling of Dom and Stuart and through a quick change in possession Sam finished off a fine move with another goal after a swift counter and a final pass from Asher. However, the first half was not without its challenges and Southgate Adelaide found themselves coming back into the game with some strong pressure towards the end but unable to break the Winchmore defence.

Shortly into the second half, after some back and forth of possession, Winchmore yet again built on the pressure with the help of Dom’s constant regaining of possession around the opposition 16 and a third goal seeming imminent. Not long after, an excellent aerial by Dom over the defence put Sam through on goal and with a deft first touch he bounced it past the oncoming keeper into an empty net to make it 3-0.

However, it was not all plain sailing with Southgate Adelaide creating some dangerous counter attacks and picking up some short corners only to find Josh equal to all of them as well as a heroic last man block on the line by Paul. The clean sheet was then maintained until the end of the game through the strong performance of the entire back line as well as the determined running across the rest of the pitch. A strong performance all around with Dom being awarded MOTM for his quality of passing and constant winning of the ball as well as Harry S being awarded DOTD for showing up to the wrong pitch and nearly missing push back!


WH&E L1 1 : 2 Staines L1

On Saturday the ladies 1s were away against Staines, and for once it wasn’t raining!

We went with 14 players for the first time in a few years, so we were prepared to do lots of work on the pitch.

The match started with some really lovely passes, communication and running off the ball to set up a goal from new player Vicki after a great run and pass in from Beth Deane. This good play continued for 5 more minutes until Staines managed to get a goal and unfortunately we lost a bit of our composure. We started the 2nd half 1-1 and kept fighting, but were unable to convert any of our chances, unlike the opposition who managed to maximise on an early run from our defenders on a short corner and get a 2nd goal.

The match ended 2-1 to Staines but we ran until the end, with a few more chances we still couldn’t convert.

Lots of great players vying for MOTM this week! Reanne for overall great play and lots of fantastic interceptions and Vicki for a lovely goal and space-making up front. Sam Deane for brilliant play in the middle of the field.

DOTD goes to Karen Smith. Even though she managed to use the toilets this time, she fell out of the car in the morning, then lost her whole family in the afternoon!

Next match this week is at home at Aylward at midday. Please come along and support!!!!


WH&E M2 1 : 5 Potters Bar M4

The Men’s 2s were up against Potters Bar 4s at Aylward Academy on Saturday. To be frank, we’re still struggling in this league. The opposition seemed to be able to control the play much more effectively than us. They covered all bases, leaving few options for us to make passes, and we in turn failed to find open positions to receive passes. And as has been noted in previous games, we were slow to get going at the start. By half time we were down something like 3-0.

We played a lot better in the second half. There was more focus and determination from probably every member of the team, and it showed that we are capable of more. We had shots on goal (unlike in the first half when I’m not sure we had any), and Luke smashed in his first goal for the club to ensure that we did get at least one goal. The end result was 5-1 to Potters Bar. Disappointing, of course, but it does feel like we can do better in future if we really get things together.

MOTM: Huw Thomas for solid performance in defence.
DOTD: Hitesh for his yellow card.


WH&E L2 v British Airways Hayes L2 (match conceded)

Another 3 points for the Ladies 2s, but not in the way they hoped with BA Hayes conceding the match. Word must be getting around that our L2s are a force to be reckoned with in this league!!

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