Top two face off in Investec Women's Premier Division

GB star Crista Cullen. Credit Frank Uijlenbroek - 450


As the teams are coming up to the mid-season break Holcombe have leaders Surbiton in their sights as the top two prepare for a crucial match in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Premier Division at Sugden Road on Saturday.

The Kent side could go top with a two goal win over last season’s champions, with whom they drew on the opening day of the season after snatching a goal in the last minute.

However Surbiton will of course be determined to prevent this and if they avoid defeat they will reach a magnificent milestone of 50 unbeaten regular league season matches, a record that stretches back over two and a half seasons to February 2014.

Elsewhere East Grinstead will be aiming to preserve their unbeaten record and keep pace with the top two as they go to bottom of the table Reading, while Clifton Robinsons will want to preserve their place in the top four as they go to Canterbury.

After climbing up to eighth with a win over Reading last weekend, Slough will want to maintain their winning form as they host Leicester. And the University of Birmingham – who have not won in their last four matches – head to Bowdon Hightown in a bid to break that record.

In the Investec Conference East, second-placed Wimbledon face leaders Sevenoaks this Saturday – and have boosted their squad with the addition of GB Olympic ace Crista Cullen.

Currently level on points and second only on goal difference, Wimbledon will be aiming to overtake their rivals with a win at Kings College School.

“We’re delighted that Crista has decided to join us,” said Wimbledon Director of Hockey Ben Marsden. “She lives in the area, and wants to have an impact and inspire people to play hockey. She’s been down to training, and should be playing this weekend.

“Last season was very positive and we finished second. This year we started pre-season early in June, and have had several good new players come along.

“We felt this was the right time to set targets and try to win the league, so everything has come into place so far.”

Promotion hopefuls Buckingham and Olton and West Warwickshire face each other in the Investec Conference West on Saturday. Either team may go top of the table, depending on how leaders Stourport fare against Bristol Firebrands.

Investec Conference North leaders Brooklands Poynton play host to Sutton Coldfield on Saturday, while Belper – the bottom placed team who held Brooklands at bay through the first half last week – entertain Wakefield.

 

* The above photo shows GB ace and new Wimbledon player, Crista Cullen. Credit: Frank Uijlenbroek.

FIXTURES – Saturday, November 26

 

Investec Women’s Hockey League

Investec Premier Division
Slough v Leicester 13:00
Reading v East Grinstead 13:30
Bowdon Hightown v Univ of Birmingham 13:45
Surbiton v Holcombe 14:00
Canterbury v Clifton Robinsons 14:00

Investec Conference East
Cambridge City v Southgate 12:30
St Albans v Hampstead and Westminster 13:00
Chelmsford v Northampton Saints 14:00
Wimbledon v Sevenoaks 14:00
Harleston Magpies v West Herts 14:00 

Investec Conference North
Brooklands Poynton v Sutton Coldfield 12:00
Beeston v Loughborough Students 12:00
Liverpool Sefton v Univ of Durham 12:30
Belper v Wakefield 13:30
Ben Rhydding v Timperley 13:30 

Investec Conference West
Oxford Hawks v Isca 12:00
Buckingham v Olton and West Warwicks 12:00
Gloucester City v Swansea City 12:30
Exe v Trojans 13:00
Stourport v Bristol Firebrands 17:00