3rd Xl win friendly....
By Paul Linaker
Even though Burnt Ash 6th in higher League
The first game back from the Christmas break saw SV 3’s travel away to Dartford Science & Technology College for the Financially Deprived to play Burnt Ash 6’s, who are currently lying 7th in Kent Open Division 2, a League above Sutton Valence. Not entirely sure what to expect, the team were told to stick to simple hockey – keep possession, pass to sticks and move into space.
For once, Valence 3’s stuck to the plan, with the first 10 minutes seeing 90% possession, 100% pass accuracy and some real pace being shown. The first significant attack came a mere 2 minutes into the game, with a precisely injected ball from Darren Thompson to Rob Cockayne on the top of the D, who turned from his marker and had a lifted shot skim past the left-hand post. A similar build up occurred minutes later with another swiped shot shooting past the post. Things were looking good.
With two subs (never seen before in this team), Valence were able to keep up the relentless pace (notably from Marius Borg Høiby, Ben Browning and Reuben Collingwood) and solid passing from Adrian Gander (apparently sober this week), Chris Jackson and Duncan Fielding across the middle, much to the dismay of Burnt Ash, who were becoming more and more frustrated by the lack of possession. The first goal came mid-way through the first half with a ball into the D from Bobby Dazzler to Rob Cockayne who shot reverse-stick into the centre of the goal past a wrong-footed Burnt Ash keeper, who had seemingly started moving to save what he thought would be a more stunning shot. Minutes later the second goal arrived with a ball in from Reuben Collingwood to Rob Cockayne who again shot reverse-stick it into the bottom right corner.
Half-time produced a positive team talk with the general consensus being – keep doing what they were doing.
The second half saw Burnt Ash find their mojo a bit more, with some good attacked made and some impressive shots going just wide of the goal. Stand in goalkeeper Andrew Wishart kept a strong command in front of goal, ensuring Phil Morris, Hamish McScotland and Nick Hall (who were all making some great tackles) kept his opening ball free. Rob Cockayne managed to take a stick to the face which produced quite a bit of blood, but the game remained friendly and in good spirits.
Valence managed a 3rd goal halfway through the half with a lightening break from defence by Reuben Collingwood, playing a ball to a fast-moving Ben Browning, who in turn played a well weighted pass onto a sprinting Rob Cockayne who slotted it past a sleeping goalkeeper for his hattrick.
Minutes from the end of the game, Burnt Ash managed to pull back a goal against the run of play.
All round a good performance by Valence, a sign of things to come for the rest of the season?
Goals: Rob Cockayne (3)
MoM: Andrew Wishart for keeping very well.
Team: Andrew Wishart, Nick Hall, Phil Morris, Hamish Dow, Chris Jackson, Reuben Collingwood, Darren Thompson, Adrian Gander, Marius Dreyer, Rob Cockayne, Duncan Field, Ben Browning
Umpire: Rupert Humphrey
Next week Valence 3rd Xl restart their Kent Open Div 3 League games in 3rd position at 10.00, away against Herne Bay 5th Xl, currently lying 9th.
Match Report by Rob Cockayne