Salisbury Men’s Hockey 4 XI Report – 1st November 2014

Salisbury 4’s     6:0     City of Portsmouth 4’s

Portsmouth only had 10 players available for this match (school half term) and this weakness was exploited from the off by a motivated Salisbury side. Despite lending Portsmouth one of their squad for the second half the home sides dominance was shown in that Salmon in goal only touched the ball once in the entire game and that was to give the ball to a defender for a 16 yard hit!! 

The score line should in fact have been a great deal worse for the away side but for some very fine goalkeeping by Portsmouth’s goalie and poor finishing by a raft of Salisbury players: worst amongst them (on his own admission) was Man of the Match and non-scorer Palmer.

On their second short corner Jon Craig’s shot made a resounding thump as it found the back board. At the next the keeper saved from both Craig and S. Ghauri before Garrett volleyed into the net. Despite numerous other attempts on the Portsmouth goal the half time score remained 2:0.

Young Chris Pearl played for the away side for the second half and was one of their two best players but the efforts of Portsmouth in the first half showed in the latter quarter when Salisbury rattled in another 4 goals from Jamie Short, Jim Nicholson, Phil Pepper and Akram Ghauri. It was of special importance for Akram was it was his first goal for the men’s side.

Strong performances from Phil Pepper, on his debut game, plus a goal, and also from Paul Cude, as usual,  whose many interceptions in mid-field prevented Portsmouth from entering the home side’s “D” and set up numerous attacks. In defence Neil Twentymans first game this season was solid and was supported by Manders and Scrase at the back.

Jamie Short who is only able to play the odd game each season showed a big improvement in his game and contributed greatly with young legs and skill in mid-filed. The unfortunate Will Smith again had muscle problems and withdrew whilst DoD Andy Scrase on his first game of the season showed Roy Hodgson what he is missing in the England football squad!

Three wins from four is a good start to the season but bigger challenges are to be faced but this result and performance was a good fillip to the squad. Salisbury are currently second equal in the league with two other teams all on 9 points.

MoM: James Palmer

DoD: Andy Scrase

Umpire: Andrew Buckingham

Team: Matt Salmon, Andy Manders, Paul Cude, Neil Twentyman, James Palmer, Jim Nicholson, Alan Garrett, Chris Pearl, Akram Ghauri, Saboor Ghauri, Phil Pepper, Jon Craig, Will Smith, Jamie Short

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