Hampstead boost play-off hopes

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Hampstead & Westminster threw their play-off hopes a lifeline with a 3-2 victory over high-flying Beeston in the Men’s Hockey League Premier Division on Saturday.

Previously top of the table until Surbiton’s 5-1 win over East Grinstead on Friday evening, Beeston found themselves two goals down with Matt Guise Brown and Will Calnan scoring for the hosts in the first ten minutes.

Gareth Griffiths halved the deficit for Beeston with a 27th minute field goal, but Rupert Shipperley scored on 54 minutes to give Hampstead back their two-goal cushion. Robbie Gleeson scored for Beeston two minutes later, but they couldn’t catch the London outfit.

Having been knocked off the top of the table the week before, Surbiton retook the lead with a 5-1 win over East Grinstead, Alan Forsyth scoring four times and Luke Taylor once. Ross Stott scored East Grinstead’s only goal.

Reading came out on top in a nail-biting clash with Brooklands MU on Saturday, a goal with two minutes giving them a 5-4 win having been behind at half time.

Goals from Sam Perrin, David Flanagan and Peter Cornell helped Brooklands to a 3-2 lead at half time with Reading’s early goals coming from James Royce and James Carson.

Flanagan added another to put his side 4-2 ahead, but Reading hit back to win with Ed Carson, Lee Morton and Ben Boon scoring in the second half.

The matches between Sevenoaks and Wimbledon, and Holcombe versus Canterbury were both postponed because of the snowy conditions.

Men’s Conference East

A hat-trick from Robbert Schenk helped Oxted to a 4-0 win over Brighton & Hove on Tuesday evening, helping them maintain top spot in the Men’s Hockey League Conference East.

On Saturday Chichester were 3-2 winners over Old Georgians to ease their relegation worries, Alex Baxter, Alex Thakore and Jamie Whitehouse scoring their goals, while James Tindall scored both for Old Georgians.

And in the other match this week Southgate and Old Loughtonians drew 1-1 on Thursday evening. With Simeon Bird scoring on 30 minutes for the hosts before Elliot Smith levelled for the visitors.

Men’s Conference West

Two goals from Sam Hooper and others from Tom Watson and Jack Middleton helped leaders the University of Exeter take a 4-2 win over Olton & West Warwicks in the Men’s Conference West on Saturday.

Cardiff & Met are still in with a shout of the title with three games in hand – but they didn’t help themselves as hosts Fareham scored in the last minute to take a point from a 3-3 draw with the Welsh outfit.

Elsewhere, Havant were 3-1 winners over Isca, while the match between the University of Birmingham and Cheltenham was abandoned after ten minutes because of snowy pitch conditions.

Men’s Conference North

Second-bottom Preston threw their survival hopes a lifeline with a 1-1 draw with leaders the University of Nottingham in the Men’s Conference North.

Nick Jeffs’ goal cancelled out Bertie Mortimer’s strike and ensured it remains close at the bottom with just three points separating the bottom six.

Leeds were 4-1 winners at bottom of the table Cannock with their goals coming from Daniel Mills, Harry Lankfer (2) and Dean Edwards.

And Loughborough Students boosted their title hopes with a 3-1 win over Doncaster thanks to goals from Hamish Roberts, Fabio Reinhard and Murray Collins. They are now just two points behind leaders Nottingham.


* Full results, tables and fixtures from the Men’s Hockey League are available here