WH&E M1 5 : 2 Vauxhall M1
For the first time this season we travelled with the bare 11 including a handicapped Adam who providing a body upfront.
Some good play and transferring meant we were always in control, but Vauxhall did have danger men and chances. After an early goal from a Winchmore penalty corner, Vauxhall came back with 2 quick goals to take the lead. However, confident calm remained in our team. We were determined to turn our dominant possession into goals and points, and parity was restored just before half time.
The pivotal moment in the match came within 20 seconds of the restart, as Colin Foad intercepted a loose pass from the Vauxhall midfield, raced up field and with a great 1-2 with Harry Stone, calmly slotted the ball past the keeper. This was duly followed up with another two goals and what turned out to be an easy 5-2 win, despite Asher missing an absolute sitter of the season to secure DOTD!
A particularly good performance from MOTM Rafi. Goals from Colin (3), Dom and Harry.
Tougher games to follow but confidence should remain high.
WH&E M2 3 : 5 Royston M3
Positives and negatives this week. We started strong in the first half, with some very nice play down both wings which led to some great passes into the D where we could have taken the lead. Both Rob Ulph on the left flank and Joseph and Thomas Chernaik on the right drove forward with strength. Rob Dowling, Luke Trevill and Tom Pearson, playing well in the middle.
As the half went on, we channelled play more into the middle of the pitch. Bad call – we went nowhere except into a wall of Royston bodies.
Royston played in parts pretty niftily, exchanging short triangle passes around the top of their half, but only because we let them. Towards the end of the first half we were standing off far too much and eventually they used the space we’d given them to take the lead.
In the second half we came out strong and fought for every ball, pressing them hard. This paid off with a couple of moves where Winchmore came close. Unfortunately, that pressure left us over-extended and Royston took a couple on the bounce.
But as the second half went on our pressure began to pay off and we began winning short corners. From one of these, injected by Joseph, Rob Dowling got the ball and struck hard and sweet into the Royston net to bring it back to 2-1. Royston replied and we found ourselves chasing 3-1. Another short corner strike from Rob D made it 2 for us. But then Royston brought on fresh legs and grabbed a couple more to make it 5-2.
Winchmore didn’t give up, showing a lot more good play in the second half and carving out lots of chances from midfield. One of these led to our final goal. After fighting for a loose ball with the Royston defence and shooting twice at close range, Pete managed at the third try to tuck the ball just inside the left goalpost to make a third for Winchmore.
In the end it ran out 5-3 to Royston, but as Huw said after the game there was a lot to be proud of and for big chunks of the match we were the better team. Roll-on the rematch in the spring!
MOTM: Rob Dowling
WH&E L1 1 : 0 West Hampstead L2
Another win and another clean sheet for the Ladies 1s! As for the match report, for that we will have to wait…
WH&E L2 v Teddington L7 (match conceded)
Another week and another 3 points for the L2s. But sadly, another match conceded by the opposition on Friday night. Either our ladies are a force to be reckoned with, or the rugby world cup final was too much of a draw for the opposition. More than likely a bit of both.