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W1 Qualify For Super 6s Finals Day For The First Time


14th January 2024

By Colin Pike

Surbiton Women have qualified for the Super 6s Finals Day for the first time in their history by finishing fourth in the Premier Division at Repton.

Surbiton more than made up for their frustration in 2023 when they missed out on qualification by two points, by winning both of Sunday's games to finish five points clear of fifth placed Guildford.

As with Surbiton Men, Surbiton Women won both games by the same score, 5-3 against Harleston Magpies and Guildford, the two teams promoted from Division One last season.

All three teams were in contention to clinch the fourth place at the start of the day, but Harleston were eliminated after a stunning individual performance by Josie Hippe who scored Surbiton's first four goals with open play goals in the ninth and 27th minutes and penalty corner conversions in the 17th and 26th minutes to put Surbiton firmly in control. Holly Payne added a fifth goal from another penalty corner before Harleston rallied with three goals in the last four minutes.

Harleston struck twice in the 36th minute with Anna Cogdell scoring from a penalty corner and Lauren Rowe netting from open play before Rowe scored Harleston's third goal from the penalty spot.

The victory meant that Surbiton could seal qualification with a win over Guildford, whilst a draw or defeat would open the door for their fellow Surrey club to make the trip to Derbyshire.

Guildford drew first blood when Kerryn Swanepoel gave them a fourth minute lead, but ten minutes later, Surbiton were 3-1 ahead, Lilie Lamacraft equalising in the ninth minute before Steph Elliott scored in the 11th and 14th minutes to turn the match around.

Guildford showed they weren't ready to throw in the towel when Kelsey Swanepoel pulled a goal back in the 16th minute, but Elliott completed her hat-trick in the 29th minute to restore Surbiton's two goal advantage.

Guildford caused a few anxious moments when Georgie Lawes scored with a 38th minute penalty stroke, to reduce their deficit to 4-3, but Holly Payne settled any nerves with a last minute penalty corner conversion to send Surbiton to Derby Arena on 28 January.

Surbiton will meet last season's runners-up, Buckingham in the first semi-final after Buckingham only dropped points to second placed Slough. Slough take on East Grinstead in the second semi-final.

Bowdon and Leicester City were relegated to Division One, but reigning champions Repton were only saved from relegation when Leicester finally won their first match of the campaign 5-2 over Bowdon in both teams' last match.

Beeston and Reading will come up to the Premier Division from Division One, but Sutton Coldfield missed out on promotion after they lost 4-3 to seventh placed Sevenoaks when promotion seemed assured. Reading took full advantage beating Wimbledon 8-3 to finish second behind Beeston.

More information about the Premier Division tournament can be found at the England Hockey Altius website here