Epsom Boys under 10s win Surrey Plate.

Alistair Murrell Colts, Match reports

Trinity School, Croydon – 24th February 2019.

Epsom Hockey Club boys under 10s secured a fantastic tournament victory on Sunday. Competing against 19 other teams from throughout Surrey the boys did not concede a goal on their way to winning the prestigious Surrey Plate competition.

Heading into the tournament hopes were the boys could escape from the group of death which included strong teams from Guildford Spencer and Wayfarers. Things started promisingly with a well earnt 2 0 victory over Guildford. Theo striking from distance before Ollie bundled home to seal the win. A 0 0 draw followed against Wayfarers B meaning a victory was required in the final group game to be sure of progression to the quarter finals stages. With chances few and far between for both teams, and time running out Epsom sent a crash ball into the D which hit a defender flush on the foot. Superb umpiring ensured play was allowed to continue as the ball rolled into the path of advancing centre back Archie Giddens who slotted the ball home just as the final whistle rang out. With the group won it was onto the quarter finals.

Spencer C provided the opposition, employing cutting edge tactics of playing with no keeper from the outset. The formation proved fruitful as Spencer made their extra man in the middle of the park count. However a Steve Gerard-esq slip allowed Epsom to steal the ball and seconds later a precision pass found an unmarked Jack who coolly won the game for Epsom.

Epsom were now in the semi-final against another Wayfarers team. This looked like a game too far for a tiring Epsom team as the opposition dominated the game for long periods. Only the determined defence of Archie and Thomas supported by Harrison and Ollie kept Wayfarers at bay with Epsom much the happier to take the game to flicks when the final whistle went. With the pressure on Thomas and Theo expertly dispatched their flicks to ensure Epsom made the final.

Epsom had already exceeded early expectations but with the boys playing as a team anything was possible against Wimbledon B in the final match up. The game began cagily with little goal mouth action but plenty of possession for Wimbledon. A break from Epsom and a Wimbledon offence in their D gave Epsom an opportunity at a short corner. A well stuck hit from the top D by Thomas was well saved by the Wimbledon keeper only to fall to corner injector Theo who slapped the ball into the Wimbledon goal. Thereafter the Epsom boys were determined to keep Wimbledon at bay. Time and again Epsom broke up Wimbledon attacks and anything that did get through was kept out by debutant Epsom keeper Pace. A final flourish from Wimbledon was not enough to break Epsom who celebrated their victory at the final whistle.

Also see Surrey Comet Report

Epsom HC is looking for new players to join this group (from year 2 and up). Contact Menscapt.hockey@epsomsportsclub.co.uk to arrange a taster session.

Epsom A Team: Theo, Pace, Ollie, Harrison, Archie, Thomas, Jack

From the archive – Epsom A Surrey Plate Winners – 2013/14