Investec Finals Weekend - Day One

Investec Women's HL Promotion Tournament Match 3

Surbiton 3 - 3 Slough

Premier division Slough were held to a 3-3 draw against Conference East winners Surbiton in a very even battle in the first Investec promotion match of the day.  Slough made the better start and were rewarded for their efforts after just 6 minutes when Lauren Penny scored from open play.  The goal motivated  Surbiton to start to play some strong hockey matching Slough for chances.  With just four minutes left in the first half Vicky Bryant found herself with space in the circle and hit a strong shot past Slough’s keeper to make it 1-1, but the lead was short lived. Slough got straight back on the attack and Lauren Penny  with a strong reverse stick hit on a tight angle, scored her second of the day to take Slough into the break with a one goal advantage.

There were three more goals to come in the second half.  Vicky Bryant netted a brace to pull the score back to 2-2 after 41 minutes, but Slough once again responded well with Alex Scott this time converting a penalty corner.  With just a minute to go the score was 3-2 in Slough’s favour, but Surbiton didn’t give up and were rewarded with a penalty corner in the final seconds which Chloe Strong fired home to make it 3-3.

Investec Women's HL Promotion Tournament Match 4

Buckingham 1- 1 Beeston

In the second game of the day Buckingham took on Beeston with Beeston needing a win to keep their promotion hopes alive.  The game started brightly with chances for both sides, but it was Buckingham who capitalised first.  On their third short corner of the game Beth Stainsby made the break through firing the ball past Beeston’s Lucy Dawkins in goal.  The first half finished with the one goal advantage to Buckingham.

Beeston piled on the pressure in the second half and after earning their second penalty corner with just 15 minutes to go they drew the scores level.  Megan Byas with the initial shot saw a good save from Buckingham’s Anna Searle, but the ball came out to Hannah Wraith who calmly slotted home.

The final 15 minutes were played at a strong tempo with both sides creating chances, but neither team were able to capitalise.  The results mean that it’s all to play for in tomorrow’s final two games of the promotion tournament.

Investec Women's Over 35 Plate Final

Bowdon 4 - 3 Horsham

In the Investec Women’s Over 35 Plate Final Bowdon Ladies took on Horsham in a seven goal thriller.  It was an action packed start with four goals in the first seven minutes.  Bowdon dominated play with the first three goals coming from their Captain Di Bellin, Helen Matthews and Tina Cullen all in open play.  Horsham pulled one back with Suzy Clapp converting a penalty corner leaving her side going into the break with a two goal deficit.

On the 58th minute Sue Crake pulled another goal back for Horsham to make it 3-2 and pile the pressure on Bowdon, but it didn’t take long for Bowdon to increase their lead again, Tina Cullen scoring her second of the day.  Horsham ensured a nail biting finish when they pulled another goal back in the final minute, but it just wasn’t enough as Bowdon sealed a 4-3 victory.

Investec Women's Trophy Final

Tulse Hill & Dulwich 2 - 1 Oxford

The Investec Women’s Trophy final saw Tulse Hill & Dulwich take on Oxford.  In a closely fought first half Oxford just edged the run of play with some good chances seeing them rewarded with two penalty corners, which they failed to convert. The first half ended in stalemate at 0-0.

The first goal of the game came early in the second half with Tulse Hill & Dulwich’s Clare Corbett scoring from open play in the 38th minute. Oxford  then began to enjoy the majority of possession with some good chances and two penalty corners but as in the first half they struggled to capitalise.  Tulse Hill & Dulwich looked dangerous on the break and with 10 minutes to go Gemma Nurse converted a penalty corner to make it 2-0.

With six minutes to go Oxford replaced their keeper with a kicking back, to go 11 outfield players and the move paid off with Oxford’s Kim Haynes firing home from close range.  It wasn’t quite enough however and Tulse Hill & Dulwich held on to take the final and lift the trophy.

Investec Women's Over 35 Cup Final

Canterbury 4 - 2 Exe

In the fifth game of the day saw Canterbury played Exe in the Investec Women’s Over 35 Cup Final and once again there were a plethora of goals in the over 35 age category.  It took Canterbury 20 minutes to break the deadlock when Mel Clewlow converted a penalty corner to make it 1-0, but the lead was short lived with Linda Webb scoring for Exe just two minutes later.  Canterbury then scored again on 30 minutes, this time through Nikki Triggs to take them into the break a goal up.

In the second half Canterbury secured what proved to be an unattainable lead with another goal for Clewlow, and a first for Moira Clewes in the 42nd minute making it 4-1.  Exe did pull a goal back on the 60th minute but Canterbury held on to take the title.

Investec Women's Vase Final

Milton Keynes 0 - 3 Oxted

Milton Keynes and Oxted brought a great supporter base with them to the Investec Finals weekend. The Oxted fans were rewarded first with a goal from Amelia Lewis who shot from the right into the rigging to make it 1-0.  This is a lead they held to the end of the first half.

The second half saw end to end play and opportunities for both sides.  Milton Keynes were unlucky not to score on the break with one shot hitting the post.  Oxted continued to press winning two penalty corners but failing to convert.  The second half stalemate continued until 65th minute when Oxted’s Katie Barker first slotted home to make it 2-0 and in the final minute captain Lisa Nightingale fired in another giving her team a 3-0 victory.

Tomorrow sees another action packed day of hockey at the Investec Finals Weekend.  We’ve got the conclusion of the Investec Women’s promotion tournament, the Investec Women’s Championship Final and Men’s EHL Championship Final between Reading and East Grinstead.

Make sure you don’t miss out on what promises to be a fantastic day of hockey with the best teams in the country doing battle.  Tickets are available on the gate.