Thurrock I 5 – 0 Upminster II
Thurrock started the match slowly letting Upminster put some good moves together and nearly taking the lead, Andy Gaut making some first class saves to keep the scores level. But Upminster continued to press and defenders Tommy Ing and Jordan Salmon put in some stern tackling to keep the visitors at bay. Then the T’s got their act together and it was captain Steve Abbott leading the team and setting the example by firing in the opening goal from close range.
This spurred the team on and some neat passing from Michael Murray, Nick Stapleton and Abbott led to Matt Leaver deflecting the ball into the bottom corner to make it 2-0 at the break. The second half brought the T’s out sharper with Andrew Sargeant being denied a goal after going one-on-one with the Upminster goalie. Michael Murray scored a neat goal after turning his marker and shooting low past the U’s keeper.
Next was the turn of Thurrock’s top scorer Matt Gaut after Andre Rudder slipped him in and he gingerly took it round the keeper to make it 4. Matt Gaut finished the rout when he and Murray played a great one-two and narrowly squeezed the ball into the bottom corner with some help from the post. Keeper Andy Gaut was named Man of the Match for his first half heroics.
Thurrock face Essex University away this week, 12.30 pm
Thurrock II 0 – 2 Wapping VI
Two penalty corners were all that separated Thurrock and promotion chasing Wapping at Palmer’s on Saturday afternoon.
The visitors made the T’s defence work hard all game, and to their credit they limited Wapping to only a handful of chances from open play, but Wapping are a well drilled and well organised side, and it showed from their set pieces.
The first goal came after 25 minutes when, from a penalty corner, the striker hit the ball deliberately wide of the goal for the injector to poke it past goalkeeper Keith Mager.
The IIs were optimistic at half time that they could get back into the match, but despite creating a few good chances, the equaliser never came.
Wapping made sure of the three points on the hour, after the initial strike from a penalty corner was saved their number 9 was first to react, finding a path for the ball into the back of the goal.
Neil Donovan impressed in his first game back since a serious illness, but antipodaean midfielder Jonathon Boyd worked hardest all over the park, deservedly taking the Man of the Match crown.
The IIs are away to rivals Brentwood on Saturday afternoon
THURROCK III 2 v 2 UPMINSTER V
Thurrock battled in this NE14 HOCKEY sponsored Div. 9 SE game and dominated the early stages of this game going close on several occasions but were unable to score. Upminster gradually got into the game and claimed the first goal from a short corner that crept over the line after 25 minutes. They continued to play the better hockey and Thurrock’s defence were worked hard to maintain the 0-1 score at half time. In the second half Upminster maintained their pressure and added a second goal after 45 minutes.
As the game progressed Thurrock began to link passes together and eventually were rewarded when Michael Fleming beat the keeper after collecting a pass from Marc Barrett. Upminster were spurred into action and moved the ball around to claim a string of short corners, however some strong defensive work by man of the match George McAllister backed up by reaction saves from Declan Salmon prevented them adding to their score.
Thurrock slowly got back into the game and mounted an attack resulting in a shot by Fleming which was saved, however Lawrence Smith seized on the rebound and hit the ball into the net from the edge of the area to claim his first goal for the 3rds. Although both teams had further chances, the game ended as a 2-2 draw.
This saturday Thurrock have a game against promotion contenders Waltham Forest 11 at Palmers.
Match against Cambridge University postponed
Thurrock II 1 – 1 Crostyx II
The best performance of the season saw Thurrock dominate large periods of the match against one of the leading teams in the league. Despite going one behind to a well worked short corner, we pushed forward forcing four short corners of our own in quick succession. We could not score during this period, but the opposition were restricted to only breakaway attempts from their fast attacking forwards.
Early in the second half we scored a fortunate equaliser and remained on top for the rest of the game. However despite our dominance we failed to score again and had to settle for a point. An impressive performance, putting us firmly mid table in a very competitive league.
This Saturday away to Havering II