The Road to Lee Valley: Men's Cup hots up

Matt Daly celebrates scoring for Surbiton

It was a weekend of shocks in the Men’s Cup with some big names crashing out of the Road to Lee Valley after some superb performances from some giant killers.

Havant, currently second in the South Premier Division continued their superb run of form, knocking out holders Reading thanks to Indy Laly’s strike in the 12th minute.

Another South Premier Division side, Banbury, who have yet to register a point in the league this campaign put their league woes behind them to claim another Conference scalp in the cup. Having seen off OIton and West Warwicks in the last round, this time out they accounted for East Conference outfit Teddington with a 4-1 win. Henley completed a fine day for the South League with a 4-3 win over another Conference team, Southgate.

Lewes could not make it four from four for the South League, however as they were cruelly beaten on penalties by Premier Division side Canterbury. The Sussex side edged in front through a goal from Michael Wood and thanks in large part to the heroics of goalkeeper Josh Pewter it stayed that way until four minutes from time when the Polo Farm club grabbed an equaliser. The game went to penalties and Lewes could not hold their nerve, losing 4-3.

University of Birmingham continued their fantastic cup run, knocking out 2013-14 winners Cannock 3-2 thanks in part to Jack Clee’s winner.

Despite the large number of upsets, there were still some games that went with the form book as Premier Division Hampstead and Westminster beat Brighton 5-2 Neil Hamilton’s double strike doing some of the damage. Lindum were put to the sword by Beeston who ran in eight goals without reply, Stuart Pilgrim helping himself to a hat-trick.

Chelmsford were downed by a strong Surbiton side who despite being pegged back to 1-1 after Steven Harrison’s goal took control of the game and fired in 10 goals including doubles for Geoff McCabe, Dave Beckett and Matt Daly.

Goals were the order of the day at Brooklands MU and Sheffield University Bankers too with the teams winning 11-0 and 16-0 against Boots and Sutton Coldfield respectively.

Barford Tigers took the honours and the place in the next round with a strong 6-3 win over Lichfield whilst Preston put aside their Conference North troubles to run out 3-0 winners over Didsbury Northern.

Plymouth Marjon won the battle of the West, albeit via a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw in normal time with Robinsons whilst there was a further Conference side to fall in the shape of Guildford who succumbed to Cambridge University, 2-1. In the all-West Conference tie between Chichester and Bath Buccaneers it was the Sussex side who prevailed, winning 3-0 at home.

With the competition blown wide open there are some intriguing ties in the next round. Banbury’s giant killing skills will be required again as they host Canterbury. There is an all-Premier Division clash between Beeston and Brooklands MU whilst Hampstead hope for another Sussex scalp as they travel to Chichester. City of Peterborough will take on Henley whilst Preston will host University of Birmingham.

Sheffield University Bankers, the holders of the England Hockey Trophy continue their cup run with a home tie against Barford Tigers whilst University of Cambridge will be hoping to see off Havant. The final tie pairs Surbiton with Plymouth Marjon.

Ties take place on Sunday 15 November. To find out all about the Road to Lee Valley click here.