Match Reports 07/04/18
Ladies 1st Team
Ladies 2nd Team
5-2 Loss against Aylesbury
Ladies 3rd Team
3-1 Win against Oxford
Ladies 4th Team
4-1 Loss Against Scarlet Runners
Ladies 5th Team
1-0 Loss against Bicester
After the Easter break, Banbury set out for the first of their final 4 matches of the season and like many of the sides having players out due to the holiday period fielding another different line up.
Their first meeting had resulted in a hard fought and physical 0-0 draw and this encounter proved to be as tough and it was a measure of the Banbury younger players that it did not phase them at all. Throughout the match they battled and harried their much bigger opponents and used their speed to great effect to cause trouble around the pitch. There were several good breaks and chances in front of goal , with Milly Whitton missing by inches and Helen Wilson in an unaccustomed position up front tangling several times with the goal keeper, who played a very good game to keep Bicester in the frame , although there was a question of whether there should have been a flick when she appeared to sit on the ball.
Libby Haden showed no fear in close encounters with a huge defender who was not averse to using her elbows , and Cally Burgess provided pace and guile up the right and came close to wrapping things up for Banbury .
Evie Wilkinson and Vicky Shackleton both had excellent games in mid field, doggedly defending and attacking with pace to create chances for themselves and the other forwards.
In defence, Megan Broome had a magnificent game to the extent that Bicester had to swap players around, Molly Clarke providing an equally impressive display on the right and Amanda Perkin and Sian Glaze kept things tight through the middle. Mandy Handforth in goal had little to do for most of the game and the things that did reach her were untroubling.
The first half was end to end and Banbury soaked up alot of pressure, but broke fast and played nice flowing hockey down both flanks to create chances up the pitch. The Bicester team used elbows and bodies to break things down and were fortunate to keep everyone on the pitch at times. But half time saw the score equal and all to play for.
The second half saw Bicester out hard and fast, using the same tactics as before , but Banbury stayed firm and battled for everything and kept breaking up either side and also through the middle. Helen tried a new idea and fell on top of the goal keeper when she had already fallen over, but even that did not result in the ball in the back of the net. With Carol Hicks soaking up pressure from 3 players, Evie and Vicky strove to dominate the areas around the middle , and showed great tenacity and vision to keep things going Banbury’s way , although taking out 4 supporters with one ball wasn’t part of the game plan.
Both sides had a few short corners which all stayed out, until with the last play of the match, Bicester managed to fire home from the right and sneaked the win, when probably a draw was again the fairer result.
Another very solid game from all the players, showing they are capable of playing exciting and sensible hockey even when things not going all their own way.
Final score Banbury 5’s 0 Bicester 3’s 1. Man of match for Banbury – Molly Clarke
Men’s 1st Team
5-1 Loss Against Purley Walcountians
Goal Scorer: Joe Allen
Manager Steve Brooker could only look on in dismay trying to remember the glories of earlier games that earned promotion back to South Premier League 1 as he watched his Banbury side slump to a disappointing last game defeat against bottom of the League Purley Walcountians. With a long journey to south London, only 11 players available and a side weakened by the absence of 5 first choice players Banbury could only manage a single goal against the 5 from their relegated opposition.
Banbury got off to a sparkling start creating half a dozen chances in the first 5 minutes including 2 penalty corners, but with no regular penalty corner specialist in the team and wayward shooting the superiority was not converted into goals. With no regular centre backs available the visitors succumbed to Purley’s first sortie into their D with Chris Jones claiming the first of his hat trick to rock the Banbury confidence.
The visitors continued to dominate possession and scoring opportunities but also continued to fire these high wide and wasted with Purley grabbing 2 more breakaway goals before half time.
Banbury came back from three goals down in their season defining victory in the snow 3 weeks ago at Tunbridge Wells but it was not to be a repeat performance as an inability to finish chances seemed to afflict the whole forward and midfield lines whilst the home side defied the possession statistics to run in 2 more goals and bring their total to 5.
Banbury battled on and began to improve in the last 5 minutes with Joe Allan steering home Steve O’Connor’s pass from the right to claim a consolation goal but the poor finishing continued to plague the attack even missing a penalty stroke that might have made the score line more respectable.
Steve Brooker said “We have had a disappointing end to the season but it cannot take away from the success of our promotion campaign that sees our return to the topflight in what will be a crucial season for the Club. We know what we need to do over the summer, we need rest, reflect and come back even stronger next season to secure our position.”
Men’s 2nd Team
5-2 Loss Against Witney
Goal Scorer: Nick Best, Adrian Simons, Dave Clark, Connor Beasley, Louis Yates
With a thumping 5-2 win against second placed Witney and other results going their way Banbury have confirmed their MBBO Regional 2 status of next season.
At strong and physical performance from Banbury helped them to a comfortable victory over Oxfordshire rivals and league high fliers Witney. Banbury started with their foot firmly on the accelerator working hard in both attack and defence to keep Witney pinned back in their own half and stepping in to cut out any attacking threats. Banbury’s hard work and determination paid off with Adrian Simons hammering the ball into the top corner to give a 1-0 lead going into half time.
Starting the second half as they had finished the first Banbury continued to dominate the game adding a further 4 goals to leave their opponents shell shocked, until with 10 minutes remaining in the game they managed to grab a goal with a shot deflected off of a Banbury stick into their own net. With seconds left to play Witney added a second consolation goal through a short corner, but with time running out were unable to mount any further attacks.
Men’s 3rd Team
2-0 Loss against Oxford Hawks
6-0 Win against Oxford