The M1's anticipated a tight encounter when they entertained Bromley & Beckenham on Saturday, and that is exactly what the game turned out to be. In extreme arctic-like conditions, and following all the early pressure, B&B deservedly opened the scoring after just four minutes when they converted a short corner. Hawks took some time to play themselves into the game, but they grew in confidence once they had established a foothold. Their good play was eventually rewarded when Ryan Hammond finished off some neat interplay on twenty two minutes. But with the B&B goalkeeper in fine form, Hawks could not add to their score and, frustratingly, conceded a second from a reverse stick strike three minutes before half time.
The next goal was going to be crucial and, unfortunately for Hawks, it was B&B who seized the initiative eight minutes into the second half with a further short corner conversion. Hawks struck back four minutes later with a short corner conversion themselves courtesy of Jack Biggs, but despite the B&B GK being by far the busier of the two, Hawks forays into the opposition circle were constantly repelled. To make matters worse for Hawks, and perhaps slightly against the run of play, B&B then won a penalty stroke which they converted with twelve minutes to play to re-establish their two goal cushion. Andy Watts pulled one back with four minutes left on the clock, but time was against Hawks and they could not find an equaliser.
Their disappointment at losing their second successive game, albeit to a very good B&B side, was alleviated to some extent when word filtered through that fellow title contenders London Edwardians had also lost at home. The M1's have two games left to play, the first a rearranged game at home against Winchester this Wednesday evening at 8pm and then a trip to Horsham next Saturday in a week that will determine the outcome of this season’s league campaign.