LX vs Kettering 15th May
Having played this fixture on several occasions in the past I knew that Kettering always field a competitive mixed age team that are hard to beat. I was also concerned that, after a couple of late withdrawals, we only had 12 players.
The weather was very suitable for hockey, sunny but not too hot or windy. We had the spectacle of Red Kites circling overhead before the game. Common for some I’m sure but a rarity for a North Derbyshire lad.
It was decided to play quarters of 20 mins and so the game commenced. We decided to defend in our half and so Kettering were able to move the ball cross field easily with forays up both wings but had difficulty penetrating our circle. The LX defence of Mason Fenlon, German Singh, Stuart Forrest, Paramjit Hayre, Chris Bollig and Chris Topham put up a stalwart performance throughout the match.
Our attack relied on turnovers and quick counter attacks. Smokey Atwal, Angus Brogdon and Steve Hewitt up front worked tirelessly and created some good attacking moves, mainly in the first 2 quarters.
At half time the score was still 0-0. We were tiring as the second half wore on and our attacks were fewer. Kettering were still content to play across the pitch without too much urgency. Our midfield of Paul Bickell, Nick Kennerley and Andy Howitt were beginning to look more ragged after chasing cross field passes the whole game.
Disappointingly the only goal of the match came for Kettering within a few minutes of the end. A clearance from around the goal found Kettering’s centre back on a rare venture upfield who shot first time from the top of the circle.
So it was back to Kettering’s clubhouse a short distance away for drinks and a very welcome and hearty meal of hotpot followed by apple crumble.