Whilst 12 of Bedford Hockey Club’s senior teams were on the fixture card this weekend for the restart of league matches, frozen pitches disrupted play for five of the games, writes Jean Fitch.
Three of the ladies’ teams did manage to play, all on home turf. Bizarrely, only two matches were involved in these fixtures.
When England Hockey restructured the leagues throughout England, the Ladies’ 5s and 6s were placed in the same division, requiring them to play each other twice in the season.
The Ladies’ 5s are knocking on the door of promotion, sitting well ahead at the top of the table, but the Ladies’ 6s are also holding their own in the division.
The two teams looked evenly matched for much of the game, play moving from end to end, but neither team getting on the scorecard. As the game entered the final stage, the Ladies’ 5s upped their attack, netting a goal which was soon followed by a second, and rewarding them with the points.
The Ladies’ 4s made a great start to the New Year, with a 2-0 victory over Hertford 2s. The Bedford team is second in the table, behind St Albans. Next weekend, weather permitting, they will be travelling away to battle it out with third-placed Stevenage.
The Men’s 5s, Vets and 6s squads may have wished their games had also been postponed.
The Men’s 5s continue to struggle this season, facing the opposite situation to the Ladies’ 5s, being placed in a league higher than is fitting. They returned from Rickmansworth after a 1-5 defeat.
The Men’s Vets may have anticipated a tough match against top of the table West Herts, but certainly wouldn’t have envisaged the 9-1 loss they experienced, particularly as the Bedford team had opened the scoring.
The Men’s 6s, who lost away to West Herts, by 4 goals to 2, face another challenging game next weekend when they host St Albans to a match at Chester Road.
Success was enjoyed the Men’s 3s. In a match away to Stevenage, Bedford triumphed 4-2. They will hope to notch up further points next weekend, taking on bottom table St Albans at Bedford’s Chester Road pitches.
On Sunday the Under 14 Girls had a fixture with the St Albans Under 14s.
Great talent was on display from both teams, with little to set the two apart.
Whilst it was the Bedford squad who took the win, the clincher was St Albans fielding a team of 11 out-field players, with an absence of a keeper.