Good start to new year

Action from the 1st XI game
Action from the 1st XI game

REWHC Men’s 1st XI 3

Harborne HC 2

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REWHC were back after the festive period and it was clear some players had enjoyed their Christmas pudding more than others.

Nevertheless REWHC fought bravely and after going briefly 1-0 down, Szymon Osyjczyk fired in a stunning reverse strike to level the score.

The Polish international buried another chance for REWHC to take the lead. Harborne levelled it up again after Leo Guy was caught in possession.

However, REWHC’s spirit could not be crushed and with a modified short corner routine, Chris Graham scored the winner with the last touch of the game to give REWHC all three points and secure their position of fourth in the Midlands Premier League.

Warwick Uni 4

REWHC Men’s 2nd XI 1

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Rugby’s 2nd team suffered their biggest defeat of the season to a youthful and energetic side.

In the first competitive game back after the Christmas break, REWHC looked a bit off the pace, losing the ball too cheaply and affording Warwick too much time and space.

They soon fell two goals behind; both goals resulted from a failure to clear the ball after initial saves by returning keeper Danny Bell.

After a stern talking to at half time, Rugby returned playing some better hockey, forwards Colin Odwell and Sam Foxton creating more chances but failing to get the ball in the back of the net. Despite playing better hockey they fell behind a further two goals after being caught on the break.

At four goals down and time running out, REWHC fought for a comeback, but it wasn’t to be.

Despite the result there were a few positives to be taken away from the game, a goal scored late on by Paul Ryan was an example of some of the fine hockey Rugby are capable of playing as well as a return from injury first performance for Sam Bevan.

REWHC Men’s 3rd XI 2

Warwick University 1

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Rugby 3rd XI, were not at their vintage best, but still managed to grind out a victory, and maintained their second position in the league.

Both sides started well, demonstrating good ball retention with Rugby creating the better chances, which left Channing in goal more of a spectator than a goalkeeper!

The deadlock was broken midway through the first half, when Rugby won a short-corner which was converted by Ken Morrison, exposing a weak goalkeeper, further attacks were not able to increase Rugby’s lead.

The second half started with the University having better possession, which resulted in Ken Morrison’s verbal tirade in an attempt to improve Rugby’s performance.

The Uni managed to equalise through a break-away and a shot that left Channing flapping, whilst unsuccessfully trying to keep the ball out of the goal. Rugby then improved and shortly after broke down the left with Best and Tailor linking up and passing to Dickinson to score with a neat bit of skill to beat his marker and take Rugby back in front.

The rest of the second half saw more chances and short-corners being created by Rugby but Warwick Uni managed to keep them out and even stopped one on the line.

Rugby travel to Burton next week, hoping to maintain their pressure on league leaders Belper.

Leek HC 1

REWHC Men’s 4th XI 1

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The 4s took the long trip up to Leek and managed to come away with a point against a tough leek side who dominated the middle of the pitch.

Rushall and Hopper came closest but it was Leek that took the lead and piled on the pressure on the Rugby defence. A fantastic save on the line by Andrews kept the 4s in the game. Rugby managed to pick themselves up and a goal from new boy Gaz Unett drew the game level.

The remainder of the match felt more like a game of ping pong, neither side able to find the winner. Dom Eyre worked hard on his debut and Rugby will be happy to still be sitting just out of the relegation spots.

Northampton Saints 1

REWHC Men’s 5th XI 3

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Rugby 5ths got off to winning ways in 2013 with a good win against Northampton Saints.

Rugby Started strongly and were rewarded with a goal from Allen when he struck a Penalty Corner from the top of the D. Saints were soon level however with another Penalty Corner attempt. Rugby then restored their lead after some good play by Thatcher and Smith, saw Chaplin Tap in for their second.

In the second half Rugby continued to create chances and Man of the Match Ward worked hard in midfield. Northampton were repelled by Reay when they did attack but the game was over when Allen turned provider for Chaplin to score his second of the match. 1-3 the final score.

REWHC Men’s 6th XI 4

Ashby 0

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Rugby 6ths won 4-0 against Ashby, a great result considering they lost 5-0 in the first half of the season.

Due to an injury the game had to be abandoned 15 minutes from the end.

Goals came from Morgan, Bowering, Ngan and Simpson. The win leaves them 5th in the league, level on points with 4th place West Bridgford.

REWHC Men’s 7th XI 4

Droitwich HC 0

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Fresh from their extended Christmas break table topping Rugby attacked scored within three minutes through James Hoggarth.

Despite their dominance the score remained 1-0 at half time with Andy Davies in the Rugby goal largely unemployed.

The second half mirrored the first in terms of possession but the inspired decision to put centre back Iain Thomson up front was handsomely rewarded as he scored twice and Hoggarth added a second to provide a score-line which better reflected the gulf between top and bottom of the table.

Dave Robson and Keith Slaughter both had excellent games and selection next week will be another interesting exercise in deciding who to leave out as the seventh team squad continues to grow.

REWHC Ladies 1st XI 0

Sutton Coldfield HC 3

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Atherstone HC 1

REWHC Ladies 2nd XI 0

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The Rugby side struggled to reach the form of the previous week in a scrappy match in which they never really settled to play their best hockey.

The only goal was put away in the corner during the middle of the first half. Rugby made many good breaks but were unable to capitalise.

The defence played a solid game and Claire was a proficient sweeper. Man of the match was Katie Mackenzie for super play but managed to get injured twice with one hit which also earned her the Barbie award!

REWHC Ladies 3rd XI 2

Coventry City & Uni 0

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REWHC Badgers XI 0

Long Buckby XI 4

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Once again Long Buckby fielded a team of relative giants against the Rugby juniors but despite this physical imbalance the Rugby players put on a tenacious and skillful display to which the eventual score line does not do sufficient justice.

The defensive efforts were, at times, heroic with Tom Webb in the Rugby goal clearing his lines on numerous occasions with great power and accurate kicking.

In mid field Rugby won a high percentage of the 50:50 tackles with Andrew Walker, Oli Taylor and Lou-Lou Danger all putting in terrific performances that much more experienced players would have been proud of.

Not only were Rugby fiercely competitive but they also had the composure and skill to develop some sublime counter-attacking moves through Cooper, Tarling and Dixon, particularly in the second half, when the Badgers were unlucky not to score and on one crucial occasion were denied a stone wall penalty for high sticks in front of goal.

All in, this was a good game and a demonstration for how much honour can be won through true grit, hard work and great team work.

Saturday’s fixtures: (19th)

M1 v West Bridgford Away 1.30pm

M2 v Worcester Hart Field 2pm

M3 v Burton Away 2.30pm

M4 v Burton Rugby School 12noon

M5 v Warwick Uni Rugby School 12noon

M6 v Loughborough Town Away 11.30am

M7 v Warwick Away 3pm

L1 v Birmingham Uni Bilton School 2pm

L2 v Stratford HC Away 11.30am

L3 v Sutton Coldfield Away 2pm