A mixture of results for Bradford Hockey Club this week with 2 wins, 1 draw and 2 losses for the 5 teams playing this weekend. The standard out result was the ladies impressive 7-0 win over City of York which was an early get up for a 10:30 am start in York. The Development team travelled to Ben Rhydding and get an impressive 3-2 win over a strong BRHC development team. The First Team men threw away a 3-1 lead which should of been about 7-0 at half time to draw 3-3 against an average Leeds 3s team. The Second Team men had a long journey to Brigg which turned into a longer journey as the end result was 11-0 loss. The Thirds team played their home game at Ben Rhydding against a strong Airedale team the game could of gone either way but unfortunately it swung in favour of Airedale losing 2-1. Overall the weekend was an up and down weekend however players started to receive their new kits and looked very smart on the pitch a lot of compliments from people that have bought it.

Match Reports – Below:

First Team Ladies – Win 7-0 vs City of York

The ladies travelled to York aiming to continue their undefeated start to the season, due to injuries and the half term holidays the ladies only had 11 players available and started with 2 defenders in the front 3. Bradford quickly got on top of the game and had constant pressure on the York back line, it didn’t take long for the first goal of the game with Millie G setting up Abbie to score from close range for her first goal of the season, this was followed up quickly with a well worked short corner with Abbie and Millie combining again doubling Bradford’s lead. Every time Bradford had the ball they looked as if they could score, the ladies add a third with phoebe and Millie combining well before pulling the ball back to Abbie to get her second and Bradford’s third. Romany added a fourth just before half time keeping her cool in front of the on rushing keeper to easily pass it past her.

The second half followed a similar pattern to the first with Phil and smithy dealing with any counter attack York could manage with Bradford keeper Lil dealing well with her only save of the match. Bradford kept creating chances the next goal came from Pheobe slipping the ball through the York centre half’s legs for Emma Whittaker to sweep home from the back post, another short corner effort saw Millie add her second of the game. The last act of the game saw Phil make a rare appearance in the opposition D to strike the game ending short corner, the York keeper saved well but the ball fell to Abbie who finished well and with the last touch of the game secured her hat trick

First Team Men – 3-3 Draw vs Leeds 3s

This game was due to be a home game however Ben Rhydding made space for us and other clubs to use their second pitch, to which we are grateful. (Spoke to a few of the players and expressed our thanks) playing Leeds 3. The game started at a fast pace with Bradford pressing from the first whistle. Leeds at the ball with the back players who tried to transfer the ball which was cut out by Ashton who went in one on one with the keeper and lobbing him within 40 seconds. Bradford continued to press hard into the Leeds D winning a barrage of short corners, Alex dragging flicking one off the top left post and the keeper making a fantastic stick save down to his right. However the pressure was too much for Leeds when another short corner which dragged at the keeper, he failed to clear and birthday boy Max Evenett was on hand to poke the ball over the line. A sloppy pass out from the back from Bradford lead to an interception and Leeds counter attacked a ball passed to the back post for a tap in 2-1. Bradford picked their heads up very quickly and were on the attack again the ball fired into Ashton who held the ball up committing the keeper to the floor and shot towards goal, a Leeds defender threw himself in front of the ball to stop the ball from going in. Penalty Flick award by the umpire. Hunt comes up from the back confidently asking for the ball. Keeping his composure whilst the fans behind the fence couldn’t watch flick the ball to the keepers left as he dived the wrong way 3-1 half time.

The score ended up 3-3. But as a team, we were disappointed with only a point. We played some great hockey in the first half. The second half was entirely different, Leeds came out strong after the break and we struggled to find our rhythm. With several players not available, mainly from the back 5, this was a tough afternoon… the forwards did a great job, but finding the killer goal was elusive. Overall played 3. Won 1, lost 1 and drawn 1, is not a bad start to the new league.

Second Team Men – 12-0 Loss vs Brigg 2s

Brigg HC 11-0 Bradford HC

150 mile round trip, no toilets and a sound beating by a highly skilful and well drilled side from Brigg HC. And to top it off lots of rain.

On the plus side 12 players, 4 spectators and a large number of players wearing the new kit.

Bob must be wondering what he did this morning when he woke up to be on the receiving end of so many shots, making some outstanding saves, questioning and rightly so some shocking umpiring decisions that led to countless PCs being awarded. Without Bob today I’m not quite sure what the score would have been!

Russ, JC, Backhouse and Steve worked hard in defence all game, Harman, Joseph, Manny and Ben giving energy but losing many years of experience to the opposition who were far too wise at times to their trickery.

Nick dropping deep to try and stimulate some through balls and attracting the defence out of position to leave Harpin and Reggie with some space to work in behind. No one stopped running, Brigg HC were just too good.

The team moves onto next week. The new kit looks good lads!

Third Team – 2-1 Loss vs Airedale

The game started in atrocious conditions with the heavy rain making it hard for either side to really string much of anything together and turned the first half into a midfield battle to try get a bit of momentum going. Airedale managed to create the first real chances of the game forcing a number of short corners in quick succession with Bradford keeper Rich pulling off a number of brilliant saves to keep it at 0-0. Bradford soaked up the pressure and looked sharp on the break, late in the 1st half Bradford managed to break the deadlock with Keiran scrambling home his second goal of the season.

The second half started much the same as the first, Airedale managed to get on top and find an equaliser through a well worked short corner. The game began to open up with both sides pushing for a chance to take the lead. With around 10 minutes remaining Airedale capitalised from a goalmouth scramble and got their second of the match. Bradford now threw plays forward searching for an equaliser creating a number of good chances but just unable to get it across the line.

Development Team – 3-2 Win vs Ben Rhydding

A strong all-round performance from the Development side earned a second league win of
the season against Ben Rhydding’s second Development side, with 3-2 victory and goals
coming from Ben Barber (2) and Joseph Kirwan.

Played in a downpour, the game was a competitive one throughout with both sides holding
the lead and playing good hockey. Ben Rhydding started the game with two adults in central
midfield in an attempt to control the ball, though inside paring of Tobias and Bhavan and
rotating centre halves of Isaac, Mr G and James all gave the adult players a hard time closing
down space and forcing sideways passes rather than threatening forward balls. Ben
Rhydding were the first to get on the scoresheet with some tidy approach play and a finish
on the rebound after Thomas in the Bradford net had saved an initial shot.

As the half developed, Bradford began to move the ball well down both flanks, with Zora
and Joseph on the right and Lilia, Gurdith and Paul ‘Lightning’ Bateson on the left troubling
the Ben Rhydding defence and creating openings. The Ben Rhydding keeper was in fine form
though and blocked a number of shots, though Bradford were rewarded for their
progressive play to level the scores with Joseph finishing from close range. At the other end,
Felicity and Eeshan, with Tim’s support, were proving a match for the Ben Rhydding
forwards, with Thomas providing a strong back up between the sticks.

The second half saw some changes, with Gurdith, Paul and Tim leaving to play in the 3 rd
team game on the neighbouring pitch, though, as the game progressed, Bradford’s play
become stronger, with Tobias taking charge of midfield and setting up a number of attacks,
either through the centre to Ben or down the flanks where Lilia and Zora and Joseph all
created chances. Bradford’s pressure paid off with two tidy finishes from Ben opening a two
goal lead which could have more but for some very good work by the Ben Rhydding keeper.

The game became a little stretched in the final quarter as the weather and the pace of the
game began to tell, and Ben Rhydding pulled a goal back with a few minutes to go from a
breakaway run and a scrambled finish. Both sets of coaches praised the players for an
excellent game, played in a good spirit. Man of the Match to Tobias, who played up against
adults for most of the game and had the better of them on many occasions through
excellent ball control and good vision with his passing. Next up a trip to Halifax!

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