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Men's 1s Vs. Winchester 1s - Saturday 15th January 2022

New Year Starts with a Wake Up Call for Banbury HC Men’s 1s

Banbury Men’s 1s – 2, Winchester Men’s 1s – 3

Banbury travelled away to league strugglers Winchester HC and dropped valuable points in a match disrupted by a set of harsh cards issued and a patchy performance by the Banbury team.

The first half was relatively stable with no cards issued and, consequently a good flowing game with end-to-end hockey from both teams. From the start, it was clear that Winchester was fighting to avoid relegation and was more hungry for the ball and more intense. Banbury’s defence was the busier of the two but Darsh Theara, Josh Nunneley, and Pete Lamb protected the Banbury D well with Kit Lamb in goal clearing well so that the initial storm petered out. After ten minutes Banbury turned the tables when the ever-busy Joe Allen charged down the right-wing and crossed a dangerous ball into the Winchester D. George Brooker’s double shot effort was parried by the Winchester keeper but Tyson Nunneley was there to flick the ball into the net to give Banbury the lead at 1-0. However, two minutes later a lapse of concentration led to Winchester gaining cheap possession and scoring an equaliser with a viscous strike for the edge of the D which keeper Lamb could do nothing about. Banbury did wake up and Steve O’Connor, Tyson Nunneley, and Harry Simons worked the flanks and created chances for George Godwin and Will Kellett up front which led to a penalty corner being awarded. Kellett made it a deserved 2-1 to Banbury with a great low drag flick going into the halftime break.

The second half couldn’t have been more different as Winchester again started more assertive and hungry and won a penalty corner after 10 minutes which they scored after Lamb saved the flick only to concede a goal after a Winchester forward swivelled on the ball unchallenged to squeeze the ball into the goal by the far post. Then the shape of the game and the mood of the game changed as loss of players as a result of some harsh card decisions led to Banbury not being able to field a settled team.

They fought hard despite this and it was only after Banbury’s keeper Kit Lamb was sent off for ten minutes and Banbury were down to nine men on the pitch that Winchester scored their 3 rd goal with a penalty awarded which Pete Lamb had to substitute for Kit Lamb in goal with very little protective gear and very little chance of saving the rocket of a flick past his head into the goal. With ten minutes on the clock, the 9 men of Banbury then threw caution to the wind and went for the draw. Will Kellett and George Brooker came very close and when Jacob Buckner Rowley was thrown into the forward line Banbury won a couple of penalty corners which just missed being converted. The game ended 3-2 to Winchester and Banbury felt hard done by but will need to use this as a wake-up call to ensure they regain their winning momentum.

Banbury Manager, Andy Camp, said “This was a real jolt after the Christmas break when we were on a six-match winning streak. We should take no side for granted in this league and will need to work hard over the next week to regain our winning mentality. The cards were harsh and disrupted our team in the game but we have to take what’s thrown at us at times and dig deep to overcome those obstacles. We have a friendly match before we face Henley at home in two weeks and we need to be the team we were before Christmas to restart our winning streak”

Photo: Tyson Nunneley opened the lead for Banbury

Photo: George Godwin in control on the flank

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