Men’s and Women ’s Cup ac­tion

Who made the Lee Val­ley show piece?

The Hockey Paper - - FRONT PAGE - by Richard Dore

BROM­LEY and Beck­en­ham fell just shy of a fairy­tale Men’s Na­tional Cup Fi­nal ap­pear­ance as two Will Hey­wood goals saw Can­ter­bury ad­vance – but play­er­coach Peter Dobson be­lieves their run proves the fu­ture is bright.

A goal in each half from Hey­wood proved the dif­fer­ence as Premier Di­vi­sion Can­ter­bury set up a show­piece fi­nal with Read­ing at Lee Val­ley.

But de­spite de­feat, Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham can hold their heads up high, reach­ing the fi­nal four de­spite ply­ing their trade in South Premier Di­vi­sion One.

How­ever, the loss does mean that a sea­son that promised so much in fact sees Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham end­ing up empty-handed af­ter finishing sec­ond to Ha­vant in the league and miss­ing out on pro­mo­tion by just two points.

But Dobson is adamant that their per­for­mance against Can­ter­bury proves the next cam­paign could be dif­fer­ent.

“It was a tight game, I think they ob­vi­ously got their goal and de­cided to hold things tight, they went into a very nar­row press and let us dis­trib­ute out wide,” Dobson said.

“It comes down to goalscor­ing and they took their chances, they got three or four and scored two goals whereas we had what four, five cor­ners and plenty of shots in­side the D, we just couldn’t con­vert. You could def­i­nitely see they’ve got some qual­ity play­ers in there, a cut above where we were.

“The club’s look­ing to re­build af­ter go­ing down last year into the South Prem. It’s just a great rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the club, even in the league that we’re in to put in per­for­mances like that.

“We clearly have play­ers that are strong enough to play in higher leagues and if we re­tain those play­ers we can look to build to­wards get­ting back in the na­tional league.

“If we can put in per­for­mances like that week in week out next year we’ll be able to get up the leagues.

“This year was all sup­posed to be a de­vel­op­ment com­pe­ti­tion, get some young faces in, and the fur­ther we’ve got those play­ers have stayed in. It’s a re­ally good nod to the fact that we’re pro­duc­ing some good ju­niors at the club.

“Be­fore you know it some of these boys will be play­ing in the same league as Can­ter­bury.

“Ha­vant pipped us to the post this year but our tar­get for next year is def­i­nitely pro­mo­tion, if we can pro­duce per­for­mances like we did here.”

Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham started the game brightly and cre­ated the first chance with a neat turn and shot from Chris Bar­nett that flew just wide post.

Soon af­ter though, Can­ter­bury started to threaten and for­ward Sam Ge­orge forced Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham goal­keeper Josh Pewter into a dou­ble save with a cou­ple of pow­er­ful shots.

Hey­wood was also look­ing dan­ger­ous and the speedy for­ward drib­bled 30 me­tres into the D to win Can­ter­bury’s first short cor­ner with ten min­utes on the clock. An­drew Dunn got his shot away at pace but Pewter was equal to it, palm­ing the ball off to his left.

But in the 27th minute the dead­lock was bro­ken as Can­ter­bury worked their way into the D and with Pewter stranded on the deck Hey­wood flicked a shot high into the net.

Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham started brightly again af­ter the in­ter­val and were

re­warded with a pair of long cor­ners which they couldn’t turn into clear chances.

Stephen Roche won a short cor­ner in the 45th minute which Dobson hit well but Can­ter­bury goal­keeper Dic­con Stub­bings saved high to his right.

Dobson was run­ning things from mid­field but with 63 min­utes on the clock Can­ter­bury had their first mean­ing­ful at­tack of the sec­ond half, Bill Cain win­ning a long cor­ner af­ter some good work down the right.

Pewter made a su­perb div­ing tackle to deny Hey­wood who was through on goal and then made an­other dou­ble-save from a short cor­ner.

How­ever, as Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham pushed for an equaliser they left gaps at the back and when the ball found its way to Hey­wood in acres of space he slid the ball home to se­cure Can­ter­bury’s vic­tory.

Not only do Can­ter­bury have a fi­nal with Read­ing to look for­ward to but they are also com­pet­ing for safety as they go up against Bath, Sevenoaks and Univer­sity of Durham in the pro­mo­tion play-off.

And Can­ter­bury coach David Mathews is hop­ing re­in­force­ments ar­rive af­ter having to make do with­out a num­ber of first-team play­ers against Brom­ley and Beck­en­ham.

“Al­though we didn’t play ter­ri­bly well we were miss­ing seven key play­ers and still man­aged to get a re­sult so we’re pretty pleased,” Mathews said. “Craig Boyne is still in Aus­tralia but we should have five or six back in. James Oates has bro­ken his hand, Tom Beans out with con­cus­sion at the mo­ment.

“Michael Far­rer’s been away and he’s made a huge dif­fer­ence since Christ­mas so it’ll be good to have him back in.

“We need to work on pass­ing, mov­ing and ba­si­cally cre­at­ing more chances,” added the for­mer Eng­land and Great Bri­tain in­ter­na­tional striker.

“We’ve got to cre­ate more cor­ners to win games, we only won three or four cor­ners here and we need to be cre­at­ing sec­ond, eight or nine, but they did de­fend well.”

PIC­TURE: David Kiss­man

Clift tops! Har­riet Smith is mobbed af­ter her 70th minute win­ner helped Clifton Robin­sons edge out min­nows Bee­ston 2-1 in their Cup semi­fi­nal on Sun­day

PIC­TURES: Guy Pedli­ham

Mak­ing Hey: Will Hey­wood’s ini­tial ef­fort was saved, but he scored from re­bound

Fly­ing high: Nick Sutcliffe fires in a div­ing shot for Brom­ley & Beck­en­ham

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