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Hockey - 23. February 2010.

Brooklands-Poynton on a Roll

EH Women's Premiership Division Saturday Feb 13th 2010




Report and photographs from John Coxon.


Following their away win at Polo Farm against Canterbury plus a home win against Trojans, Brooklands-Poynton have continued their run of form with a richly deserved 2-1 victory over Olton and West Warwicks today at  sunny Manchester’s Regional Hockey Centre , Belle Vue. Prior to the game, Olton were  4th in the league,  six points ahead. Poynton’s growing confidence was evident  in  Kate Maltman’s  programme notes where she praised the squad  for having “stepped up their performance and fitness to the next level”, and , on present form, she was  hoping to continue the successful run with a win that would take them to within three points of the visitors.



Poynton made a confident start taking the initiative from the first whistle , but it was the visitors who took an early lead after just nine minutes when  #12 , Rachel Mack struck home for the Midlanders through open play. Undeterred, the local girls continued to press with evident confidence and commitment . Poynton’s number 12 , Jane Ambler commented “.Despite that early goal setback we  continued to bombard the Olton circle but the final pass often went awry and the short corner routines were badly misfiring.”  In fact most of the first half was played out in Olton’s half with the home team successfully breaking the visitors down when they surged forward with some fine tackling and interceptions , ever willing to make forward attacking play.

A string of short corners were killed off at both ends with committed play and solid defence from both teams and some fine goalkeeping from Michelle Thomas for the home side and Mags Rees keeping for the visitors. As it transpired , as the second half unfolded, Poynton continued to constantly press Olton with play of the highest standard including a significant contribution from newcomers Sarah Hopkins, Amy Gavin both looking completely at home at this level in this there first season as regular members of the ever improving Brooklands-Poynton  squad. Olton were thwarted twice where the ball bounced off the post  #5 ,Pippa Jones broke the dead lock after some determined play, from a short corner on 51 minutes bringing the score level and from then on Poynton dominated a tiring Midlands side. It looked for all the world like they would have to settle for a draw but in the 68th minute Cat Savage found Jane Ambler on the edge of the circle with a brilliant raking pass giving her the task of delivering the  dramatic late coup de grace coolly  rounding the Olton  keeper and shooting home the winner.



In fact Jane, had “retired” at the end of last season  and had,  in fact, to no one’s real surprise , turned up for duty at the start of the new season to lend her experience to a side which was introducing a few new players yet to experience the pressure at Premier League level.  It was some how fitting that Jane sealed the win for her delighted team mates.


This was a well deserved  result for Poynton  now  sharing  sixth in the league on equal 16  points with Canterbury who are ahead on the strength of goal difference although Poynton have won one more game than the Kent side. The weekend saw league newcomers ,University of Birmingham, biting at their heels just a point behind and local rivals Hightown 7 points adrift of them at the bottom end of the league  just  above Trojans and Clifton.  The big story of the season so far is the continuing winning streak of runaway leaders Leicester who took their tally of wins to unlucky-for-some 13 , this time  beating struggling Clifton 4-1 with second-placed Reading ten points below them  only managing a draw at Canterbury while Slough won 5-3 at Birmingham University Ladies.


A clearly disappointed Olton have had a successful season so far and must be  relishing the prospect of European hockey this April as the team grows in confidence. Captain and GB international, Rachael Walker attributed their success to the team’s mix of experienced players with Olympic and other international experience combined with a fine batch of developing younger players. She had herself taken time out from international duties but has her eye on 2012 rejoining the  GB Hockey squad set up to that end.


Poynton  were to face a re-arranged premiership  match against Bowdon Hightown Sunday 21st but again the game was cancelled through over night snow at South Downs Road putting another eagerly anticipated local derby on hold. They are due to tackle 2nd place Reading March 7th while Olton have Reading  next weekend followed by a game with runaway first-placed Leicester on March 13th.


Team Data from www.englandhockey.co.uk


Umpires : Janice Tasho and Richard Pearce Match Official: Ann Houlstan

Images from the clash here at  Olton  v Poynton




Olton and West Warks


Michelle Thomas


Mags Rees


Helen Armishaw


Holly Chipman


Amy Gavin


Jenny Prichard


Pippa Jones


Fiona Davies


Susie Finlayson


Emma McCabe


Sarah Hopkin


Emma Rochlin


Cat Savage


Rachel Ferguson


Rebecca McGuiness


Laura Price


Kayleigh Humphreys


Mander Gatherer


Kate Maltman


Lucilla Parker


Jane Ambler


Kerry Thompson-Moore (Capt)


Sarah Newman (Capt)


Rachel Mack


Jess  Berry


Kate Edgeworth


Cath Linaker


Rachel Walker




Naomi James




Lucy Horn


Coach : Anne Dutoy


Coach: Nisar Chaudry


Manager: John Maltman


Manager: Lynn Moore



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