Men’s Hockey League Premier Division – 6 October 2018

EAST GRINSTEAD 04 SURBITON

Scorers: James Royce 4-PC, Alan Forsyth 49-F, 68-F; Arjan Drayton Chana 57-F

Squad: Lewis Prosser, Tom Sorsby, Ben Boon, Jonny Gall (Capt.), Zach Wallace, James Royce, Alan Forsyth, Sam Spencer, Nick Parkes, Conor Williamson, Mark Haycroft (GK).

Subs: Dave Bartram (6 mins), Arjan Drayton Chana (7), Scott Evans (8), Harry Gough (9), Rory Calnan (10).

Umpires: Will Champness and Nick White

Match Official: Jo Pennycook

Surbiton Men bounced back from dropping points at home to the University of Exeter last weekend to cruise to a convincing win over East Grinstead on Saturday night.

As further evidence of Surbiton’s youth policy, a squad which showed several changes included youngster Rory Calnan who made an encouraging debut under the Saint Hill floodlights.

Surbiton’s enthusiasm and confidence was evident in the opening seconds as Ben Boon made an interception only for the ball to go out of play. That confidence was rewarded in the fourth minute when James Royce found the backboard from Surbiton’s only penalty corner.

The penalty corner had arisen after an attacking run and shot from Zach Wallace, Patrick Smith’s save judged to be dangerous.

East Grinstead had a chance to equalise instantly, only for Mark Haycroft, coming into the squad for Harry Gibson, saving well from Ben Mackey. Tijn van Groesen also forced a first half save for the hosts, with Wallace after his heroics in midweek at Lee Valley, causing further problems for the East Grinstead defence.

Ross Stott came close to equalising shortly before half time, but Surbiton led 1-0 at the interval.

With both teams continuing to attack, it was Surbiton’s ability to finish which saw them pull away in the second half. Alan Forsyth doubled Surbiton’s lead in the 48th minute, with Arjan Drayton Chana, returning to the squad, finding the backboard in determined fashion in the 57th minute to virtually put the game beyond East Grinstead’s reach.

Forsyth’s attacking run and finish two minutes from time gave Surbiton their biggest win at Saint Hill since March 2016, when Forsyth had also scored twice in a 5-1 win.

Holcombe kept their one hundred per cent record with a 5-0 home win over Reading on Saturday evening. On Sunday, something will have to give as Beeston and Hampstead & Westminster, both boasting maximum points after two games, meet at Paddington Recreation Ground.

With Wimbledon in action in the Euro Hockey League in Barcelona, the only other Premier Division fixture on Sunday is at Sevenoaks where the visitors are Brooklands Manchester University, Surbiton’s next opponents on 14 October in Altrincham.