Hockey: Relief as Marlborough secure the first victory in their new league

Written by Anil Sud.

Marlborough vs Bristol University A                Marlborough win 3-1

Saturday, November 3:  Coming off a strong performance against Cardiff, in a game they should have won, Marlborough made the short trip to Bristol full of determination to record their first win of the season against Bristol University A.

The game started with both teams unable to find their rhythm as the quick, bouncy pitch led to several missed traps and errant passes.  After the frenetic opening, both teams started to play some good attacking hockey without causing either goalkeeper any trouble until John Bromley’s pass found Will Hughes in the ‘d’ and after some cool work Hughes slotted home to give Marlborough the lead.

Marlborough really began controlling the pace of the game due to excellent work with their defensive press which kept Bristol under pressure leaving Marlborough ready to pounce in case of a mistake.  The tactic played out superbly when Hughes latched on to Captain Rich Holman’s pass before nut-megging his marker and firing an unstoppable shot into the bottom right corner. 

The first half ended shortly afterwards leaving Marlborough 2-0 up and very much in the ascendancy.   

Aware of their failings in previous games from a winning position, Marlborough began the second half in something of a nervy manner with bad passes and poor decision making leading to Bristol earning several successive short corner attacks.  With some fortunate defending Marlborough were able to keep these out, but were still unable to put the game to rest with the third killer goal. 

The pressure mounted further as Bristol doubled their efforts and were unfortunate not to score a couple of goals with several lightning fast attacks.

Marlborough’s nerves were finally soothed when Holman once again found Hughes for his hat trick with five minutes remaining.  The relief was palpable throughout the Marlborough team and this relaxation contributed greatly to Bristol scoring a consolation goal in the final minute. 

The game finished 3-1 with Marlborough picking up their well deserved first win of the season.