Hockey: Marlborough first team’s convincing win over important league rivals
After their recent improved results and off the back of the previous week’s first win of the season, Marlborough went in to their game against Bath Buccs B believing they had a good chance of securing all three points.
Level on points with the visitors, Marlborough knew that this and the return fixture later in the season could prove vital in their bid to stay in the league.
The game started with Bath Buccs entirely dominant and Marlborough were very fortunate not to find themselves one or perhaps two goals down after the first ten minutes. Marlborough struggled to string together any meaningful periods of possession and Bath deservedly took the lead after a short corner routine.
Shortly afterwards Bath were fairly awarded a penalty stroke after a Marlborough foot on the line denied a clear goal. Bath converted the stroke leaving several Marlborough players wondering if they were in for an extremely difficult day.
Fortunately the 2-0 deficit seemed to galvanise the team and soon Marlborough were creating chances of their own with quick breakaways after breakdown in Bath play.
Right on the stroke of half-time Matt Osbourne finished off a flowing move through the midfield and attacked with a slap shot which found the far left corner. A perfect end to the half for Marlborough.
The second half began quite differently to the first - with Marlborough enjoying a lot of possession and with creative play exhibited by both sides. Mid-way through the second half attacking midfielder Will Seward found himself unmarked several yards out from goal and took his opportunity to level the scores by powering a shot between the Bath goalkeepers legs.
With the game finely in the balance Marlborough had several ‘heart in mouth’ moments with Bath unlucky not to retake the lead after some lightning fast attacks.
The game finally swung fully in Marlborough’s favour when Seward scored his second after some brilliant instant control and a precise reverse stick strike that left the Bath goalkeeper helpless once more.
With six minutes to go Bath pressed their players higher, desperate to equalise having held the lead earlier in the game, but Marlborough seemed to be holding firm with some composed play through the defence and midfield.
The result was finally put beyond any reasonable doubt when newly acquired right back James Richardson scored his first goal for Marlborough with a thunderous undercut strike in to the top left corner after further great set up play by man of the match Seward.
The game ended 4-2 with Marlborough deserved winners after showing determination, doggedness and zeal - after a somewhat hesitant start.