Champs East Grinstead off to a flyer

East Grinstead celebrate winning the Hockey 5s in 2014, credit Simon Parker - 450

REIGNING champions East Grinstead got off to a great start on day one of the Hockey 5s Championship Men’s Premier Division at St George’s Park in Burton on Trent on Saturday, scoring 21 goals on their way to securing two wins.

Simon Faulkner and Andy Piper scored five goals each on the opening day, while Wes Jackson and Niall Stott scored three each.

They beat Beeston 11-3 in their opening match with Faulkner and Piper both scoring hat-tricks, while they won 10-4 against Sevenoaks later in the day with Niall Stott, Piper and Faulkner both scoring twice more.

But Canterbury have also made a cracking start and lie second, with 22 goals to their name so far. Ben Allberry is the top scorer after day one, having scored four times in their 12-2 win over Holcombe and secured a hat-trick on the way to an 8-10 win against Reading, while Liam Foster scored four in that match.

Team Bath Buccaneers are the only other unbeaten team, having beaten Bowdon 10-4 and drawn 3-3 with Beeston. Tim Davenport and Josh Mardell both have three goals for Bath.

Bowdon staged a comeback against Surbiton. After being behind 4-2 at half time, they hit back to win 5-6 with David Egerton (2), Simon Egerton and Lenni Bernstein grabbing the crucial late goals.

Sevenoaks got off to a great start with a 7-3 win over Reading in their first match, with George Torry scoring four times while the other goals went to Duncan Parnis, Dominic Bowden and captain Chris Barber.

After their 12-2 loss to Canterbury in their first match of the day, Holcombe ran out 8-6 winners over Surbiton in the last match on Saturday, with Stephane Vehrle-Smith scoring a hat-trick.

Day two on Sunday gives leaders East Grinstead perhaps their stiffest challenge yet when they take on third-placed Team Bath Buccaneers in the third match on Sunday, while they take on Reading later in the day. Canterbury face Sevenoaks and Surbiton as they bid to catch East Grinstead.

* For goalscorers and full competition details, including live updates click here -

* Above photograph shows East Grinstead celebrating last season's victory. Credit: Simon Parker.