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Bristol & West Hockey Club

"Bristol's friendliest (and most affordable) hockey club"


3rd Team Match Reports

Robinson's C 4 v 2 B&W B, 18th March 2017

As seems to be the way against Robbies teams, we were 1-0 down within a couple of minutes and it was looking like it was going to be one way traffic.  However, we started to find our rhythm and forced our way back into the match, winning a few short corners but the keeper made some good saves.  Just before half-time we committed the cardinal sin of giving the ball away in midfield with all our players in their half; they broke at pace and made it 2-0.  At half-time we switched to 3-4-3 and within five minutes we'd pulled a goal back through a fantastic Tom Varney deflection at a short.  We then suffered from a cruel umpiring decision, a penalty flick awarded for a foot near the line even though the ball was heading square across the goal.  3-1 down and soon 4-1 when another Robbies attack was clinically finished.  Rather than fold, we pulled it back to 4-2 from a close range Tom Varney effort following a counter-attack down the left.  A lot of graft throughout the team and pace and movement up front, but not enough to beat what was a very good Robbies team.

B&W B 2 v 1 Westbury C, 11th March 2017

We dominated the first 20 minutes and I'm not sure Westbury even reached our D.  In that time we had many chances but their keeper was having one of those days.  In the rest of the half things evened up a little but neither side could break the deadlock.  Despite engineering many promising positions through lovely hockey, the final ball into the D was often lacking accuracy, not anticipating the runs being made by Harvey and Curtis.  Mid-way through the second half the breakthrough came when a (mis-hit?) reverse from Joe looped into the air and crept in just under the cross-bar, with Liam shepherding the ball across the line.  However, we always seem destined to have close games against Westbury and an attack down our left wasn't defended well, creating an extra man, and the ball was calmly slotted into the corner for the equaliser.  At the next of our many shorts, Patch elected to flick and the ball was blocked by a body on the line, conceding a P-flick.  Mark stepped forward and despatched the ball into the top left corner, later described by the Westbury captain as the best flick he had ever seen.  Surely we could now close the game out without incident?  No, we conceded a short in the dying seconds and up stepped the big bloke from the back who had been melting the ball out from 16's.  He duly melted the short, a foot off the ground heading into the left corner, which was miraculously deflected past the post by the left post defender.  (You got it - it was me!)  The final whistle went, greeted with relief in the knowledge that the two vets in the team had saved the day......

Mendip 3 v 2 B&W B, 4th March 2017

Before today's match, top-of-the-table Mendip's home form read: scored 48, conceded 2.  Well now they've conceded 4!  A fantastic performance today, going down by the narrowest of margins, 3-2.  We set ourselves up much more solidly than we did in the 7-0 trouncing we received at home earlier in the season and were unlucky to go behind when an attempt to cut out a cross fell to one of their players on the line to tap in.  Completely against the script, we equalised when Curtis broke through the first tackle and fed Harvey to bundle the ball over the line.  We conceded a few shorts but held firm until half-time, 1-1.  A sloppy goal shortly after the break put us on the back foot and we were soon 3-1 down from a well-executed short.  Lie down and roll over? Certainly not!  We pressed to get back in the game and Mendip's discipline started to go, with the umpires getting their cards out.  We pulled it back to 3-2 when Curtis got the ball through to Joel who made no mistake from 8 inches.  A grand finale followed but we weren't able to get the equaliser.  A fitting tribute from the Mendip captain at the end who said that was the hardest match they'd had all season.  A great work ethic within the team, great discipline, good shape and a great team spirit, reminiscent of the fabulous 4s from two seasons ago.....

B&W B 6 v 2 B&W C, 25th February 2017

A comfortable victory yesterday against a below-strength 4s team, winning 6-2 despite playing most of the game with 10 men.  After dominating early possession we took the lead from an unlikely source (yours truly) from a straight strike at a short.  No sooner had we reset than Chris Goulding ran onto an aerial into the heart of our defence, wrong-footing everyone and calmly lifting the ball over the advancing Mike Lilley.  Normal service was quickly resumed when Fraser junior finished with a trademark reverse flick.  Tom Varney appeared to be working on deflections and managed to deflect his first attempt into his head; he clearly learnt from this and succeeded in scoring with his next attempt to make it 3-1.  Simon Barrett entertained the crowd before the half-time whistle with a reverse attempt from the top of the D that failed to trouble the ball.  The second half started in much the same vein and the unlikely source made it 4-1 after Patch squared a mis-directed injection from a short.  Not to be outdone, Fraser junior popped up with two more goals to complete his hat-trick, bringing his tally to nine in four appearances.  The 4s had the last laugh with a consolation goal from Nick Sutcliffe at the end, although with a bit more composure they could have scored more in the second half.

Firebrands C 4 v 3 B&W B, 18th February 2017

A frustrating match today, going down 4-3 away to Firebrands C.  A bright start from us for a change but we found ourselves 1-0 down due to a mis-hit reverse from a wide angle.  We drew level soon after when Tom Varney reverse-deflected a cross in from the right.  We then looked very comfortable but conceded another goal from a reverse in an almost identical position.  2-1 down at half-time but we felt confident and drew level soon after the break when my straight hit from a short looped up towards the goal and Curtis followed in with an overhead smash.  We then committed hockey suicide and conceded two quick goals.  As we have done many times this season though, we kept going and pulled a goal back from a Joe John effort to set up a grandstand finale.  However, the equaliser didn't come and we were left to rue our many chances and fluffed short corners.

Shepton Mallet A 1 v 3 B&W B, 4th February 2017

A really good team performance yesterday, wining 3-1 away to Shepton Mallet A.  As we found in the home match which we drew 2-2, they are a much better team than their league position suggests.  In fact, the team they put out yesterday was strong.  Due to last minute illnesses, we were down to the bare 11 and set up in a 3-4-3 formation for the first time.  After weathering an onslaught in the first ten minutes, we started to get into the game but quickly realised we weren't going to get awarded any shorts.  On one such occasion, despite a couple of hacks in the D, Joel managed to power through and chip the keeper to take the lead.  Our second goal was a tremendous slap from Patch the length of the pitch to Edd Wood who drove along the baseline and slipped it across the Harvey who duly obliged.  Just before half-time Shepton had another dubious short.  A powerful shot six inches off the ground looked goal-bound but Patch picked it with a reverse and cleared - a key moment in the game.  The second half continued as before, with Shepton getting awarded shorts and us none, despite some outrageous tackles e.g. Joe tipping the ball past the onrushing keeper and being wiped out.  The clincher came when Joe picked the pocket of a defender in the centre circle and played in Harvey who still had the keeper to beat but made no mistake.  Still never comfortable because of the Shepton short corner generator in yellow, and Mike Lilley had to pull off an outstanding save from a goal-bound drag-flick.  Patch also picked another elevated short with a reverse but got penalised for back-stick!  With four minutes to go, Shepton got their consolation but it was too late.  A great team performance but a special mention for Liam who had his best game for us so far in central midfield.

Bristol Uni C 9 v 3 B&W B, 29th January 2017

If the game had ended after five minutes, we'd have been victorious through Joel's opener which looped over the keeper.  Unfortunately, hockey is a game of 70 minutes.  Bristol Uni equalised, then took the lead, but we pegged them back through a Lusmore reverse.  We had chances to take the lead but we found ourselves 4-2 down at half-time, despite having been on top for a good ten minute spell when 2-2.  We still believed and pulled it back to 4-3 through a close-range Joe John effort.  At this point Bristol Uni were undoubtedly worried but instead of crumbling, they turned it on and seemed to score at will, adding five without reply.  Heads went down and we lost our shape and, disappointingly in some cases, commitment and effort.

B&W B 8 v 1 UWE B, 28th January 2017

Things started well when we scored from our first short - a return to the injector Harvey who cheekily reverse-flicked the ball into the net.  UWE failed to read the script and were awarded a dubious short from which they equalised with a flick.  We made hard work of it for a while but then Simon danced - yes Ed, he did - past several players and flicked the ball past the stranded keeper.  Harvey made it three before half-time with a disguised duff which dribbled between the keeper's legs.  We began to play better in the second half, although the numerous options for people on the ball was confusing for some.  The half included two excellent goals, the first when Joe drove in along the baseline and set Kevin up to drive home, the second when Kev slapped the ball in from the left for Joe to ghost in front of the keeper to deflect in.  Harvey completed his hat-trick (and later clearly thought he was too young to get served to buy the jug - where's Stewart when you need him?) and Joel poached two goals from six inches.  One final word for Elliott, who tweaked his back in the morning and didn't get past the warm-up, but stayed to watch the match.

Keynsham 5 v 2 B&W B, 14th January 2017

Although the score line wouldn't suggest it, a pretty decent display today, losing 5-2 away to Keynsham.  We found it difficult to get to the pace of the game initially against a strong Keynsham side and quickly found ourselves 2-0 down.  However, our first short of the game yielded a goal as Patch took a slightly wide injection and flicked it into the far corner.  Staying within one goal didn't last long as Keynsham themselves scored from a short.  We nearly pulled one back when Harvey raced through on goal, rounded the keeper and pushed the ball goalwards only for the covering defender to dive at full length to deflect the ball wide.  Not to be outdone, Harvey scored within a minute with a firm shot into the corner with his back to goal, rather Riggs-esque.  We wanted to go in at half-time in touching distance but a clever deflected goal gave Keynsham the two-goal cushion again.  The second half was a much more even affair, and I'd even go so far as to say we had the best chances, with Keynsham getting noticeably fractious as chances from Harvey, Jack and Joe went agonisingly past the post.  Keynsham had the last word and sealed the win with a late short.  Everyone played well, although personally I thought Harvey, Simon and Ross deserve a special mention.

B&W B 2 v 3 Robinson's C, 3rd December 2016

Another close match today, this time going down 3-2 at home to Robbies C, second in the division.  A bright start from us but we were soon 1-0 down when we failed to prevent a reverse strike which squirted into the far corner.  We had several chances in the first half to pull level, with the ball sitting tantalisingly on the goal line a couple of times after saves by their keeper.  A good start to the second half saw us equalise as Joel deflected a ball hit into the D.  However, within a couple of minutes we were 2-1 down following a short corner, which quickly turned into 3-1 after another short.  We kept pushing and were rewarded when Joe managed to scramble the ball over the line at the far post.  We went all out for the equaliser but ran out of time.  We played some lovely flowing hockey for much of the game.  If we keep playing like this, the results will come after Christmas.

Westbury C 2 v 2 B&W B, 26th November 2016

A really good performance yesterday, drawing 2-2 away to Westbury C.   Lovely movement up front from Tom and Lawrence, good width from Kev, Joe and Will, complete domination in central midfield by Ed and Simon, and generally solid at the back (although we did concede two soft goals).  We deservedly took the lead when Tom ran onto a through ball and slotted it past the keeper.  1-0 at half-time and barely troubled at the back.  However, Westbury equalised through a breakaway goal against the run of play early in the second half, but we quickly took the lead again when Ed broke down the right wing, and Joe finished the square ball into the D.  Again we failed to hold the lead for long when a mis-hit ball from the right found a Westbury player unmarked in the D, and he cleverly flicked the ball over the on-rushing Mike.  Both teams pushed for the win and despite a final whistle short corner, we failed to find the winner.  Despite the disappointment of the draw, I'm pleased with the way we played.

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