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Men's 7th XI - Match centre

Phoenix & Ranelagh 3
Sonning 7
Sat 5 Nov 14:30 - South Hockey League - MBBO Open League - Division 9 Full time

M7s get first point of the season

Mighty 7s were magnificent!

This week we decided to take everything up a level this week in the quest for total hockey and searching for marginal gains. After team talk, tactics and motivational speeches, Eddie (over 40 years) Butler led the squad warm-up and drill. We were in the mood for victory. I even won the toss and chose to change ends - to get the wind behind us in the 2nd half!

It was a welcome return for Owen "the groin" Page, who with Steve, Andy and Jon, together with the old half of the Cowper collective, formed a solid, yet flexible defence that was able to withhold the strong pressure from the Phoenix side that sensed opportunity beckoned.

But the Mighty7s were up to the task. Eddie formed a sure base that allowed our midfield ensemble of Simon, Lewis, Dean (Hugh and Morgan) to find space up the wins and string some passes together. Upfront Michael and Jay were making space and receiving some lovely balls through from midfield. And for the first time this season, we were in front, a goal from Lewis - the buzz in the team was electric.

The second half brought the horrible realisation that I had earnt the DOTD. My choice of ends masterstroke had also gained the setting sun in our eyes - there was no avoiding it, but just to make sure, I managed a 2 metre pass from the 16, straight to the opposition, which required a majestic save from Cowper Snr to avoid my embarrassment.

Phoenix piled on the pressure, but the defence, and the rest of the team, repeatedly pushed them back. Short after short hit the net, but crucially not the backboard and it felt like this was going to be an epic day. Unfortunately in the last few minutes, we buckled and an impressive dribbled ball finally made it over the line.

Final score 1-1. It is difficult not to be disappointed. We came close to our first 3 points, but we got our first and the team played brilliantly. So proud of their effort, commitment and good spirit.

There were 2 take-away comments that we received from Phoenix. The first was one that I'm sure other teams get, "we really enjoyed playing you guys", but nonetheless good to hear. The second really underlined our progress "you don't play like a bottom of the division team, we've had far easier games higher up the table!"

Onwards and upwards.

MOTM: Tim Cowper
DOTD: Andy Staig

Next game is at home v Harrow at 12:00 As ever, if you are free and can help us out, please get in touch

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Team selection

Team selection has not been published for this fixture yet.

League round up

Other MBBO Open League - Division 9 results

Aylesbury 5
Newbury & Thatcham 6
Eastcote [7] Eagles
Oxford 9
Harrow 2

League table

# Team Pl Pts
11. Eastcote [7] Eagles 15 14
12. Abingdon 3 14 14
13. British Airways 3 14 12
14. Aylesbury 5 15 12
15. Sonning 7 16 11
16. Bicester [4] Development 14 10
17. Maidenhead [5] Mystics 0 0


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