L1 Host Clifton Robinsons On Saturday
By Colin Pike
Surbiton Ladies host sixth-placed Clifton Robinsons at 1.30 pm on Saturday (19 Mar) in the Vitality Women's Hockey League Premier Division Top Six at Sugden Road.
Surbiton lead East Grinstead by four points going into the latest round of matches after a superb 7-1 away win at Beeston.
Darcy Bourne completed her third hat-trick in successive matches in style, scoring four goals to take her season's tally to 15, one behind the division leader, East Grinstead's Sophie Bray.
Clifton come to Elmbridge following a dire run of form which has seen them pick up one point in their last nine matches, a 3-3 draw at Hampstead & Westminster in February. Since the teams first met in 2012-13, Clifton have won once, in March 2020 on their last visit, when Kathryn Lane scored the only goal.
Clifton qualified for the Top Six with good early season form, starting with an opening 2-2 draw at home to Surbiton, followed by a 1-1 draw at Buckingham. After a 3-1 home loss to Hampstead, they drew for the third time in four games with a 1-1 draw at Holcombe before winning three games in a row, 2-1 at Swansea, 5-4 at home to Loughborough Students and 1-0 at home to the University of Birmingham.
All three wins were important to their Top Six qualification, but sinc then, Clifton have struggled, losing 2-0 at Beeston, 2-1 at home to Wimbledon and 6-1 at East Grinstead in 2021.
In 2022, Surbiton won 3-1 in Bristol to get Phase Two up and running, followed by the 3-3 draw at Hampstead. Two narrow home defeats followed to Beeston (3-2) and Wimbledon (2-1) before conceding six goals for the second time at East Grinstead, this time without reply and a 5-1 home defeat to Hampstead.
Catherine Macaulay, who scored both Clifton goals on opening day is their leading goalscorer on five with Livvy Hoskins and Claire Jones both on three.
Phoebe Richards, Megan Crowson and former Surbiton player Holly Munro have all scored twice with Carla Dunnett, Tilly Edwards, Clemmie Houlden, Carmen Ansley, Ashley Mainwaring and Abi Porter all having scored once.
Second placed East Grinstead welcome Beeston to West Sussex having won both matches earlier this season in Nottingham 2-1 and Wimbledon travel to Hampstead & Westminster, having lost 3-1 and won 2-1 at home so far this season.