After the indoor ‘highs’ commented on seven days ago the column was almost bound to be less triumphalist this week but there are still some good performances to write about starting with the 12-0 home win achieved by the Men’s 3rds over Felixstowe 2nds last Saturday. The prolific Gavin Cole had the team three ahead by the tenth minute with yet another hat-trick before he laid on a pass for skipper Matt Brand to fire in the fourth. Greg Jagger then took advantage of the new rule to smash in the fifth as if he was at the Rod Laver Arena and Gavin was on hand to make it 6-0 at half time. Soon after the resumption Matt skilfully weaved his way along the by-line before slipping the ball passed the goalkeeper and he then laid on Gavin’s fifth. While all this was going on Jon Aldridge was giving a masterclass of ball control and accurate passing in midfield and it was fitting that he added his name to the scoresheet. Gavin then scored his sixth before Phil Cobbald got in on the act firing in a shot from the edge of the circle just inside the left post. To their credit the Felixstowe players never let their heads drop but only once did they test Jordan Wiseman in the Magpies’ goal. The scoring was completed by vice-captain and defender Jack Richards with his first goal for the club. This coming Saturday the team will be looking to complete the double over hosts Newmarket (3.30).

This transpired to be the only home win of the day but things could have been so much better had, with a little luck, three draws been turned into wins. The Girls’ Development played well drawing 1-1 against an older Dereham team with Ellen Pope grabbing their equaliser in the last quarter. This Saturday the team has another tough game away to Norwich City (3.15). The Ladies’ 7ths then drew by the same score when they entertained Norwich Dragons 7ths with Shirley McAllen converting a first half penalty stroke after Dragons had taken the lead. The team is at home again this Saturday when they will hope to complete the double over Hornets (10.15).

Next into action were the Ladies’ 2nds against Old Loughtonians who like them are fighting to avoid the four relegation places in their league. With their squad reduced to twelve through injury and illness Magpies took the game to Old Loughtonians from the start but were unable to turn their pressure into goals. They were not helped by their penalty corner routine letting them down. Old Loughts came more into the game in the second half but Magpies continued to look for the elusive winner. After the goalless draw manager John Adams complimented the Magpies’ team by rightly saying they had played exceptionally well. While this was a useful point three will be needed against bottom placed Dereham away on Saturday (12.00).

LONDON MARATHON If you are thinking of supporting someone in this year’s event may I please ask you to consider Katie Kinsella who is running in aid of Allergy UK. As many readers will know Katie (who plays for the 3rds) is married to Robbie (who plays for the 1sts) and they have made a video about their charming daughter Evie (who is often at the club) and the health problems she has experienced in her young life.

To see the short and touching video please click

evies Movie.wmv

and if you wish to support Katie and her cause she would much appreciate you going to

Over on the other pitch the Men’s 4ths were up against a lively and in-form UEA 2nds and they played far better than their 4-0 defeat would suggest. On Saturday they travel to play Pelicans 3rds (3.00) who like them are in mid-table but only three points off the bottom two places. The last game at Weybread was between the Ladies’ 6ths and Norwich City 5ths while the temperature was dropping. In a good quality and enjoyable game Julie Davy put Magpies ahead before City hit back to win by three goals to one. Magpies are at home again on Saturday this time to Watton 3rds (12.15).

Turning to the away games I start with the Ladies’ 4ths who maintained their league leadership with a 2-1 win over Loddon. They were 1-0 ahead at half time through Kathryn Bullen and Anna Kilbourn made it 2-0 after the break, following more good work by Laura Tibbenham, before Loddon pulled a goal back. Phoebe Preece was once again ‘Duchess of the Day’. Meanwhile for the Ladies’ 3rds it was ‘déjà vu all over again’ when for the fourth time in their last five games they drew 0-0. This time it was against Carrow who they beat 5-1 at home in October and once again they played a lot of good hockey combined with hard work but once again they were not clinical in front of goal. They dominated the game to such an extent Holly Riches in goal didn’t touch the ball once! However, with Norwich Dragons 3rds losing the team has moved up to second place in their league two points behind the 4ths. This Saturday the 3rds are away to Loddon (10.30) while the 4ths entertain Broadland (3.15).

CHEESE AND WINE EVENING It is a big ‘thank you’ to everyone who supported this enjoyable event (there was room for more!) last Saturday and congratulations to Katrina Sitch and Andy Johnson and their team for kindly making all the arrangements including the splendid range of food on offer. The next social event is the Race Night in the clubhouse on Saturday 27 February.

The Ladies’ 5ths continued their good run (they have lost only once in their last ten games) by beating Carrow 2nds 3-1. Rachael Clifford put them ahead in the second half after good work by Imi Meynell-Anderson and Georgie Cantrell added the second shortly afterwards following more good play by Imi. Georgie later converted a penalty stroke before Carrow reduced their arrears. The team is away to Lowestoft Railway on Saturday (11.30). Meanwhile the Men’s 5ths thought they had their game against Felixstowe 3rds sown up at half time after goals by Lewis Belsey and Charlie Tighe (following good work by Lewis – so he told me!). But in the second half they lost concentration to such extent they eventually went down 3-2. There must be no repeat on Saturday when they host North Norfolk 3rds (1.45). The Men’s 6ths continued their fine run with a 2-1 win over UEA 3rds (in a game transferred to Norwich Dragons in view of wind damage at the UEA) to take their points tally from their last five games to a highly impressive thirteen moving them up to fourth place in their league. After a goalless first half Simon Bardwell put them ahead from a penalty corner only for him to have the misfortune to deflect the ball passed stand-in skipper Steve Halliley for the UEA equaliser. But these things happen to all-action players such as Simon! Undeterred Magpies went in search of victory and the vital goal came following a flurry of penalty corners when Jon Wells drove the ball into the net to clinch an excellent 2-1 win despite playing with only ten men due to several regulars playing for the 5ths and two late withdrawals. This Saturday they are at home to Norwich City 7ths (3.30).

The Men’s 2nds were away to league leaders Letchworth who have dropped only four points all season and skipper Lawrence Baynes said they put in a really spirited performance despite going down 3-0. Trailing by two goals at half time Matt Bensly went close to bringing them back into the game on his encouraging debut while Sol Barker also played well in his first game for the team. Jonty Herschel-Shorland was MOTM. This Saturday the team play City of Peterborough 2nds (12.00) at Weybread and with games running out three points are essential as they fight to avoid relegation.

John Livings, Leigh Sitch, Ben Wright, Tristan Baynes, U18
John Livings, Leigh Sitch, Ben Wright, Tristan Baynes, U18

The Men’s 1sts are in the same position as the 2nds and following their 6-1 (Ben Wright) away defeat to Southgate on the resumption of their outdoor season they will hope for at least a point as they travel to play Sevenoaks on Sunday (2.00).

The Boys’ Development returned to form beating Norwich City 4-0 with first half goals by Arthur Johnson and Tom Caston before Arthur scored a further two in the second half to keep the team on the heels of league leaders Norwich Dragons who edged past Pelicans 4-3. This Saturday the team entertain Dereham (10.45) looking to make up for their surprise 6-5 defeat in the away game before Christmas. On Sunday the U14 Boys went down to a narrow 2-1 (Hayden Macaulay) defeat away to IES in the national competition and on Sunday they are home to Bury St Edmunds (10.15) while the U16 Boys entertain Phoenix (Essex) (12.00) needing a draw to be sure of a place in the next stage of their competition. Also on Sunday our eight teams in the Norwich City Minis did the club proud with the highlights beingU12 Girls and U10 Girls both 1st in their Gold events, U12 Boys and U10 Boys 2nd in their Gold events and the U10 Girls ‘B’ joint 2nd and U10 Boys ‘B’ 3rd in their Silver events. Very well done!


The Ladies’ 1sts return to outdoor league action on Saturday when they host league leaders Slough (2.00) and it might be asking too much of the team to repeat the victory they had over Slough in the middle of November. But there’s no harm in hoping! Good luck to all our teams this weekend.

Lydia and Richard (Ratty) Alexander on the birth of Kitty (5lbs 13ozs) on 25 January and to Emma Lee-Smith on helping East Grinstead to win the Super 6s at Wembley Arena last Sunday.

COMMUNITY CHEST EDP readers are asked if they would kindly consider cutting out the tokens from their copy each day and place them each week in the Community Chest in the clubhouse.

With kind regards

Mike Denham
[email protected]
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