10th November 2013

‘Polished Antiques shine in the sun’

Result: LX 1     Ashford 4

The Ashford Hockey Club must have a connection with a meteorological genius who smiles on this fixture.  Sandwiched in between two overcast rainy days, the game was played under blue skies with bright sunshine.

The LX Club started in usual style with early time being taken to shakedown with players in unaccustomed positions, and fielding initially three guest players, one of these being Matt Andersen aged 15 from Ashford HC juniors who played much of the first half, and who now probably holds the record as being LX’s youngest guest player!

It was inevitable that LX were going to be under substantial pressure against a strong Antiques team, and as attacks mounted, opportunities arose for Trevor Hughes to score two fine goals, the second partially saved by the diving David Kiernon (guest Canterbury goalkeeper), but the ball spun agonisingly just inside the post.  After this the LX Club settled down, winning four penalty corners, but fine saves from Ashford’s John Taylor,               

from well struck shots from Greg Hutchings, which together with a Henrik Kjellin shot striking a post, denied goals for LX.  Graham Ramsden, a new LX player from the Ipswich and East Suffolk HC then demonstrated fine skills and perseverance in the circle to make the half-time position for LX 2-1 down.

Following a change of positions, Brian Murrill (guest player from Folkestone Optimists) moved to outer midfield thereby enabling Graham Ramsden to give extra support in midfield to Sudesh Nayar and Peter Ross.  Playing south into the sun, the LX team had a good start with attacks on the Antiques goal, but early in this half an unfortunate hamstring injury to David West who had been excellent at centre back, meant he had to leave the pitch and therefore the LX team were reduced to ten players.

After this the slightly younger Ashford forwards of Alan Bell and Danny Schwartz really stretched LX, and Trevor Hughes completed his hat-trick, and Alan Bell scored a spectacular reverse stick deflection to give the Antiques a deserved 4-1 victory.  Despite this result it is acknowledged that everybody who played for LX demonstrated tremendous effort and commitment for the team.

The day ended with the always highly enjoyable Ashford hospitality, with an excellent meal prepared and served by Tony Post and his catering team.  It was good to see Tony Jones attending the occasion after his double knee operation, and especially Bill Butcher and John Widgery, both previous playing LXers, who umpired the game skilfully and gave good advantage when possible.

As always, this fixture could not take place without the hard work of Keith Hedley (LX), who has managed this game for well over a decade now, and sincere thanks were made to him at the meal, for which he received a generous round of applause in appreciation.

LX Squad:- David Kiernon (Canterbury HC), David G Read (Captain), Gurney White, David West, Adrian Money, Brian Murrill (Folkestone Optimists), Graham Ramsden, Sudesh Nayar, Peter Ross, Greg Hutchings, Matt Andersen (Ashford HC), Henrik Kjellin

Match Report:- David G Read