The Men’s 4’s secured a convincing 4-1 win against Eastcote 3’s. You could argue the score line flattered Eastcote, with Hawks failing to capitalise on some of their chances, but they scored when it mattered and it was a much-improved performance on last week.
With a fifteen-player squad, Hawks had the legs and energy to stick to their game-plan. There was plenty of movement off the ball, and this enabled the men in maroon to find themselves in some promising positions early on.
It was the 4’s who made the breakthrough. From a penalty corner, Barnaby Barber bagged himself his first goal of the season, despite the goalkeeper’s best efforts to keep his flicked effort out. This was followed by a fine reverse stick finish from young Julian Laird, which found the top left-hand corner of the net. It was another promising performance from the junior, who had the watching spectators purring.
Hawks did concede a goal from a penalty corner just before half-time, causing some anxiousness at the interval, but the marginal deficit did not last long.
The attacking press was a key area of focus for the second half, and the forwards did not disappoint. After dispossessing the opposition in their own 25, George Guillain was on hand to put the ball away for Hawks and settle the nerves for the home side.
Despite a flurry of penalty corners and chances for Eastcote, Hawks never really looked in danger of conceding thereafter thanks, in part, to another solid performance from James Holder at the back. Hawks would, however, go on to secure victory following some more brilliant work in the D from George Guillain – after rounding a couple Eastcote defenders, and evading the oncoming goalkeeper, he found Tom Mills who was able to fire the ball into the net and round off a pleasing 4’s performance.
It’s back to Bisham for the 4’s following the half-term interval, where they will hope for a better result (and a larger squad!) following their last showing there.
Many thanks to Clive Jones for the great photos.