Upminster 4 v 1 Thurrock
Having wrapped up the championship last week Thurrock’s first string decided to have a bit of fun in their last game of the season. The game began with strikers Steve Abbott and man of the match Matt Gaut playing in the centre of defence and Tommy Ing heading up the strike force.
With over half of the team playing out of position Thurrock took the lead when Ing laid the ball off to Andre Rudder who calmly found the back of the net for his first goal of the season. The score remained at 1-0 until the half time break.
A further shake up of the team at half time proved to be one step too far and a strong Upminister side took full advantage and scored four goals to take a deserved three points.
Captain Steve Abbott and coach Andre Rudder have had the luxury of picking from a large squad of players with players in all positions being pushed for their places. Goalkeepers Andy Gaut and Keith Mager have both had strong seasons.
A solid and stable defence of Luke Danbrooke, Tommy Ing and Jordon Salmon have kept the goals against to a minimum. A hard working midfield of Matt Leaver, Nick Stapleton, Nick Sherd, Andy Sargeant and Andre Rudder have supported both the attack and defence.
A consistent strike force of Steve Abbott, Christian Jenkins, Jacob Agoro and Matt Gaut have only failed to score in one game all season. Players that have forced their way into the squad during the season include Declan Milane, Liam Appleyard and Michael Murray
After a fantastic season Thurrock’s first team will be looking forward to a well-earned summer break.
Thurrock 2nds 19 v 1 Clacton 2nds
Only a defeat to bottom of the league Clacton and a swing of 22 goals would prevent Thurrock from clinching the NE14 Hockey Div6 title, but the 2s were unstoppable on Saturday at Palmer’s.
At half time the score was 8-0, and with the prospect of a plus 100 goal difference on the cards, the Tees never let up.
Playing like this Thurrock can expect to mount a serious promotion challenge next year in division 5.
In the end the champions finished two goals short of their target, but a total of 118 goals for and 20 against, and 19 wins from 22 matches is a fantastic return for the season.
Skipper Keith Mager said “I couldn’t be more proud of my team. To deliver 13 wins in a row is sensational.”
Mens 3 Thurrock 3rds 1 v 2 Wapping 8th
Thurrock ended their season in NE14HOCKEY Div. 8SE playing a side who have already achieved promotion. In the early stages it was Thurrock who played the better hockey restricting the visitors to their own half whilst forcing the keeper into a series of timely saves as the forward partnership of Michael Fleming and Jimmy Venus mounted waves of pressure. Midway through the half, a free hit by Wapping found an unmarked attacker who drove into the D and flicked the ball past Danny Hick.
This goal against the run of play caused Thurrock to panic and revise their formation in an effort to quickly equalise. Unfortunately it had the opposite effect and allowed Wapping to claim the upper hand in midfield and pressurise the Thurrock defence.
Just before half time the visitors doubled their lead from a short corner shot that crept inside the post.
Thurrock started the second half strongly and regained their shape disrupting Wapping’s play and mounting a series of attacks with both Fleming and Venus being unlucky to hit the post on two occasions each and Liam Birch shooting just wide after being put through by a pass from Matthew Skinner. Eventually Thurrock were rewarded for their effort when Jimmy Venus received a pass from Oliver Smith and dribbled around the keeper before scoring from close range. Thurrock continued to dominate possession and only a string of athletic saves from the in-form keeper prevented them equalising and claiming a point.
Minis End of Season Tournament xxx
Thurrock and Southend Mini’s Hockey team had their final tournament of the season at Chelmsford. Following on from last season’s success in the Vase which they won, they played for the Plate this year and came third. Some great play from the youngsters, the under 10s girls won 1, drew 1 and lost 1.The under 12s girls won 1 drew 1 and lost 2. The under 10 boys drew 2 and won 1 and lost 1, and the under 12 boys drew 3 and lost 1. Training at Palmers has now finished but will recommence in early September.