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Hockey: Three goals apiece - Marlborough Ladies held to a draw in Salisbury

Salisbury 2nds     3     Marlborough 1sts      3

Marlborough ladies travelled to Salisbury following the disappointment of their last game which they lost to a last second winning opposition goal.

The team started with purpose and penetrated Salisbury's defence time and time again in the first ten minutes. It wasn't long before the defence was pulled apart by Jess Pugh, who dribbled in from the right hand side past two defenders before calmly slotting the ball past the keeper.

Surely this was going to be the game to put to bed last week's demons. But before the celebrations were over, Salisbury hit back immediately. The sixteen yard press was broken and two passes later the ball was in the back of the Marlborough net. Route one hockey at its best.

Emotions were high and Vanessa Pickford-Smith was green carded for remonstrating with the umpire. Time to regroup and adjust the formation.

Marlborough soaked up the pressure in midfield and goalie Vicky Moxham remained unchalleged. With eleven ladies back on the pitch, Marlborough continued to attack as they had in the first quarter, but Salisbury's keeper stood tall and produced save after save.

The second half brought substitutions and a determination to win. A short corner strike from Rachel Cox thundered into the right hand corner early on and Marlborough looked favourites to win.  

Then, with 15 minutes to go, Salisbury were awarded a short corner, and the ball was fired into the top of the net. After a discussion between the umpires, the goal was given due to a deflection off the defenders stick. Once again Marlborough's lead was wiped out.

Marlborough lost their shape a little, and Salisbury were able to exploit it, with dangerous runs down both the right and left of the pitch. It seemed the tide had turned and Salisbury were hungry for the win. Once again Marlborough were caught on the break.

The ball was passed wide and the Salisbury forward sped down the wing passing two defenders before firing it across for a free player to slot the ball in. Vicky Moxham was left helpless.

Marlborough knew time was not on their side and pummeled Salisbury with attack after attack then finally a quick ball was taken and a one two from Vanessa Pickford-Smith and Janeve Beer resulted in a short corner which was converted by Millie Dawson. Straight off the training field, a textbook goal.

Despite three further attacks and another short corner, Marlborough were unable to grab a last minute winner. From a game of dominant possession it was a disappointing draw. But with seven goals and four points from the first three games of the season , the team knows what it needs to work on to take the points.

Marlborough News Online Player of the Match was Rachel Cox for her goal and fantastic distribution in midfield.

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First point of the season for Marlborough Ladies

Marlborough Town Ladies 2016 17Marlborough Town Ladies 2016 17Marlborough Town Ladies 2 Laverstock & Ford Ladies 2

Marlborough Town Ladies were pleased to secure their first point of the season with a 2 all draw against Laverstock Ladies on Sunday.

The game opened up with some great passing amongst the team; everyone working hard and moving the ball well. Despite the positive start it was difficult to get any real chances on goal.

It was nearing the halfway mark when Dani Hull made a great run down the left wing, beating a defender and then the Laverstock goalie for a one nil lead.

Marlborough came into the second half a bit unsettled. They struggled to concentrate and made some poor mistakes, ultimately ending in two consecutive goals from a spirited Laverstock side. Marlborough did not get their heads down but it was hard work.

They had to fight for every ball until some luck came their way in the last few minutes. A free kick just outside of the box and Ffion Williams stepped up to take it.

Composed as ever, she struck it well and sent the ball hurling into the back of the net, giving Marlborough the close draw that they felt they deserved.

The Ladies were pleased with their hard work and stroke of luck, determined to stay more disciplined for their next game against a tough Trowbridge side.

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Marlborough Rugby: Marlborough's lose narrowly in tough Cup battle with Trowbridge

Trowbridge 32 - 28 Marlborough

Marlborough lost a tough and competitve cup game against their league rivals Trowbridge.  Both teams had made winning starts to the season and Marlborough were looking at the game to give them selves a benchmark against the rest of the league and in particular the favourites to win the league.

As you would expect the early phases were physical with both teams eager to take control.  A clash of heads between Marlborough head coach and prop Chris Budgen and the Trowbridge hooker meant both men had cuts to the forehead that we patched up a number of times during the game.  Trowbridge missed an early penalty attempt but they kept the pressure on with some good phases of play on the visitors line. Eventually they dived over for a converted try.  Soon after Trowbridge kicked a penalty for a high tackle to take a 10-0 lead.  Marlborough were straight back at the home team and wing Ratu Vuira charged a clearance kick down and won the lose ball.  The ruck was won and James Farrell spun out a pass to Amori Nailago who went through a gap and in to score under the posts.  Garth Bari added the conversion.

Again Trowbridge came back at Marlborough and using the wind and slope were soon deep into the 22 and applying pressure.  They passed the ball out and for a moment it looked like Farrell had intercepted and was going to break out.  He was judged to be offside and the penalty was kicked for a 7-13 scoreline.  The home team were on top now and despite some excellent defence by all, in particular Jack Lynd who was leading his team by example, Trowbridge scored a converted try under the posts and a 20-7 lead.

As the half entered time added on for the blood injuries a further penalty to home team gave them a 23-7 lead.  Marlborough still had time to attack again and got some phases in the home team's 22.  After a number of rucks close to the line, Farrell passed out to Nailago and this time he span in the tackle to get over.  Bari converted and a 14-23 half time score.

Early in the second half the 2 teams exchanged penalties as the score moved onto 17-26.  Both sides were battling hard and the physical game continued. T he difference possibly being in the well drilled Trowbridge side against a rather more Barbarian style Marlborough team.  Both teams had penalties and the visitors closed the gap to 20-26.  A key moment in the game was when a late tackle by Nailago resulted in a yellow card.  Back chat by the other players then resulted in the ref advancing the penalty on and it was kicked.

A further penalty to the home team gave them a 32-23 lead and more than a score ahead.  Again Marlborough came back.  They had opportunities for break outs and Feiloaki Ngungutau was unlucky with a clever blind side break.  The Trowbridge defence was strong but as the game entered the last minutes a number of phases resulted in Lynd getting over, the conversion was missed and a score of 32-28.  Any hopes on a late score went as the final whistle went soon after the restart.

Any exciting and tough game. Good luck to Trowbridge in the semi final.

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Football: Marlborough Ladies shot down by Spitfires

Marlborough Town Ladies 2016 17Marlborough Town Ladies 2016 17Marlborough Ladies 0 Swindon Spitfires 3

Facing Swindon Spitfires, the team Marlborough beat in the cup final last season, was bound to be tough.

As expected, Swindon came out hard. They managed a three-nil victory against Marlborough in their first home game of the season.

Within five minutes Swindon knocked in their first; a well-worked goal from the skilful Spitfires strikers. But Marlborough did not let this deter them.

They kept their heads up, working hard to play some great football. The Spitfires keeper was able to keep them in the lead with some great saves and it wasn't until the second half when Spitfires were able to gain a greater lead.

Taking advantage of good opportunities, they scored two more goals and secured the game.

Despite the loss, Marlborough battled hard until the end and could be pleased with their performance. Their players proved adaptability of positions and worked hard as a team.

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Football: Marlborough Ladies suffer an early season loss

Marlborough Town Ladies 2016-17Marlborough Town Ladies 2016-17Trowbridge Town Ladies 7 Marlborough Town Ladies 2

The first game of the season for Marlborough was a disappointing loss against Trowbridge Town Ladies.

A 7-2 defeat away on Sunday (September 11) was not how Marlborough intended to start the season.

They began well despite it being a hot day. Marlborough were up against very young and clinical Trowbridge players but they didn't let this affect their game plan.

They played well and were only 2-1 down at the half. They also managed to come out with an equaliser within minutes of the second half starting.

Unfortunately, shortly after, a couple of simple mistakes by Marlborough led to a series of Trowbridge goals.

In the span of five minutes, the score jumped to 5-2. Marlborough played hard but missed some opportunities and were unable to bring the game back.

Trowbridge were able to score two more goals before the game ended, leaving Marlborough disappointed but determined as ever to come back stronger for their next game.

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Cricket: Purton v Marlborough - Marlborough battle to a 3-run victory away at Purton

Match Report

West Of England Premier League (Wilts Division)

Purton v Marlborough   6th August 2016

Marlborough 155 all out;  Purton 152 all out

Marlborough won by 3 runs


Marlborough Cricket Club Saturday 1st XI 155 for 10 beat Purton CC 1st X1 152 for 10

Marlborough CC 1st XI travelled to Purton looking to bounce back from the previous week’s defeat to Westbury.  Stand-in captain Nick Crabbe won the toss and was happy to bat first on a typically good Purton wicket.

He wasn’t so happy an hour later when the top order had been blown away by the rampant Purton skipper Lee, who took four quick wickets to leave Marlborough in tatters at 22-5 after 11 overs.

Former MCC skipper Arran Dickinson and up-and-coming batsman Josh Bates set about repairing the damage with a useful partnership of 33 before Bates was caught for 14.  Dickinson continued to bat fluently until he bowled by the leg spinner for a well compiled 36.  Will Langton (28) and Paul Smith then put together a match changing partnership of 55 which swung the momentum the way of the visitors.

Purton heads went down as the pair batted positively, regularly finding the boundary.  Smith looked particularly fluent for his run-a-ball 37 and looked set for a maiden 1st team fifty until he was bowled by Woolford. Once he and Langton were dismissed, Joe Arkwright quickly followed and the Marlborough innings ended on 155.

After tea, the golden arm of Will Langton (3-13) struck as he dismissed Purton’s two most dangerous batsmen, Xander Pitchers and Tom Bowler.  He quickly followed that up with the wicket of last week’s centurion Whittaker, thanks to a smart catch by Homani.  Mohan Balusu then removed Ramani to leave Purton reeling at 32-4.

Hill and Woolford then began to repair the Purton innings and both looked set to win the game when Hill, having hit a six the previous ball, tried to repeat the feat and only managed to pick out the safe hands of James Richardson on the mid-wicket boundary who held a crucial low catch off the bowling off the ever reliable Smith.

Balusu (2-36) then returned to bowl his final two overs and picked up the crucial wicket of Woolford, who was bowled through the gate to reduce Purton to 115-7.

At drinks Joe Arkwright had taken over the keeping duties from Homani as more overs of spin were required.  Once Harrison Painter’s tidy spell had finished (1 for 44) Homani kept up the pressure by bowling an immaculate length which the Purton batsmen were unable to come to terms with. The squeeze applied by Homani (2-19) and Smith (2-29) told and Purton subsided to 152 all out giving Marlborough a hard fought victory by 3 runs.  The final wicket falling to Homani thanks to a sharp catch by Arkwight.

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Marlborough Rugby: Under-strength Marlborough turn on the power in second half to overcome Frome

Frome 10 - 20 Marlborough

An under-strength Marlborough team made their way down to Somerset on Saturday, hoping to protect their unbeaten league record.

The 1st half was closely contested, with both defences on top. Marlborough’s backs looked lively in open play, forcing Frome to concede several penalties at the ruck.

From one of these penalties, Garth Bari put Marlborough 3 points ahead after 23 minutes.  However, Frome went down to the other end straight from the kick-off, and their number 8 scored in the corner off the back of a 5-metre scrum.  With coach Chris Budgen coming on in the front row just after half-time, Marlborough started to dominate in the scrum.

Ten minutes into the 2nd half, quick handling off the back of a scrum gave Pita Robanakudava space out wide, and he rounded his man to score in the corner and put Marlborough back in the lead.  However, Frome continued to work hard, and were rewarded with their 2nd try in the corner following a quick attach by their back division.

With Marlborough’s forwards winning more ball, their backs kept running at the tiring Frome back-line and this paid off after 34 minutes when Amori Nailago went over out wide.  Nailago repeated the trick 5 minutes later, and a superb touchline conversion by James Clancy with the last kick of the game gave Marlborough a well-deserved but hard-fought 20-10 win.

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Hockey: Played one won one - Marlborough ladies open with a victory over Devizes

Devizes    0       Marlborough    2

Marlborough ladies first team started the season with a comfortable win against Devizes' first team in the Wessex East Division.

Marlborough started rather slowly and for much of the first half had little to offer. 

Opportunity arose however when Heather Barnes made it through the defence to create a one on one with the Devizes keeper. Having edged the ball round the keeper it was surely going to be a well deserved goal?

But alas! her stick ended up on the floor after coming to blows with the keeper and with no offence against her witnessed by the umpire it was not to be.

At half time coach Matt Way gave clear direction to the team and Marlborough set out the second half in a much more commanding fashion. Possession remained in Marlborough's favour as they passed the ball much quicker utilising the wings as the forwards bombarded the Devizes' D.   But the ball just would not go into the net.

Marlborough's break through finally came as Captain Penny Bowen weaved through the midfield and crossed the ball into the D to Catherine Manley who was waiting on the far post. An easy tap in and one nil to Marlborough.

Sensing a victory was theirs, Marlborough increased the pressure on Devizes and it wasn't long before newcomer to the team, Janeve Beer, created Marlborough's second goal.

 She fired the ball into the D looking for a deflection from the waiting forwards and with a Devizes touch ultimately securing the goal.

In the last ten minutes Devizes started to apply the pressure but, with Marlborough goalkeeper Vicky Moxham parrying shot after shot, they were unable to affect the score line.

The game ended 2:0 to Marlborough.

Marlborough News Online player of the match was awarded jointly to Penny Bowen (joint captain) and Vanessa Pickford-Smith for their tireless work in midfield.

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Golden Team GB keeper Maddie Hinch gives Marlborough Hockey Club ladies a spin on Twitter

Maddie Hinch's re-tweetMaddie Hinch's re-tweetIt was just a routine evening training session for the goalkeepers of Marlborough Hockey Club's ladies squad.

Then first team goalie and joint captain, Vicky Moxham (on the left wearing the Marlborough News Online logo) and four junior goalies started testing their acceleration with some noisy charges off the goal line. 

And Club Vice Chairman Sarah Kendall snapped a fabulous photo (below) - catching the fun and enthusiasm of the moment.

The photo went onto the Club's twitter feed and was picked up by Maddie Hinch who was Team GB's goalkeeper in Rio and saved the vital shoot-out goal to take the gold medal for the team - beating the Netherlands, their long term rivals.

Twenty-seven year-old Maddie Hinch - known as 'Mads' or 'Mad Dog' (because of her bravery) - has 32,600 followers on Twitter.

She re-tweeted it to her followers with an appropriate message:  "Haha Love this @MarlboroughHC!! - goalkeepers are a special breed."

It is estimated that nine million people watched the Rio ladies hockey final and such an exciting finish to the tournament should give ladies hockey a real lift in Britain.

The goalies' training session that went round the Twitter-sphereThe goalies' training session that went round the Twitter-sphere

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Marlborough Hockey Club gets set for the new season

A big cheer for Team GB's gold medal hockey team (click to enlarge)A big cheer for Team GB's gold medal hockey team (click to enlarge)Sunday (September 4) was Club Day for Marlborough Hockey Club and about sixty players came to the College Astro-pitches for warm-up and practise games with mixed teams varying in size between 13 and 14 players - exciting stuff!

They all lined up to give a rousing cheer for Team GB's gold medal winning ladies hockey team at the Rio Olympics.  The extraordinary tension of the final against the Netherlands was still fresh in the minds of many of the players - inspiring stuff!

So many members and potential members came to the Club Day that someone was sent out to buy more burgers and sausages for the after practise BBQ at the club house by the cricket ground.

For 2016-17 season, the Mens first team is captained by Anil Sud, and the Ladies first team has Penny Bowen and Vicky Moxham as joint captains.

Anil SudAnil SudPenny Bowen & Vicky Moxham Penny Bowen & Vicky Moxham The men's first eleven will be playing in the Central 1 Division of the GoCrea8 Hockey league. Their campaign opens with a home game against the Old Bristolians on October 1.  They have several new players including a striker who has played at national league level.

The ladies' first team have two friendly fixtures on the next two Saturdays and begin their league campaign in earnest in the East Division of the West Clubs Women's Hockey League with an away game against Devizes on September 24.

The men's second team captain is Ed Watson and their third team is captained by James Lane. The ladies' second team captain is Louisa Gosling and their third team is captained by Daisy Beckwith.

The Club continues to benefit from the services of their coach Matt Way. A qualified PE teacher who works at St John's Academy, he is currently involved with Wiltshire Hockey as a Junior Academy Centre coach.

Evening training sessions at the College Astro-pitches start next week - men's on Wednesdays (7-9pm) and ladies' on Thursdays (7-9pm).  And each session is preceded by junior development sessions: Wednesdays 6-7.30pm - boys years 8-11, and Thursdays 6-7.30pm - girls years 10 and 11.

The Juniors training session continue on Sunday mornings.

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Town Mayor's team well beaten by Marlborough Cricket Club eleven in match to help cricket loving refugees

Mayor Noel Barrett-Morton with 4MI team members: l to r Reza Greaves, Craig Dudgeon, Michael Phillips & Alex Hadcock [Click on photos to enlarge them]Mayor Noel Barrett-Morton with 4MI team members: l to r Reza Greaves, Craig Dudgeon, Michael Phillips & Alex Hadcock [Click on photos to enlarge them]The rain held off, the evening sun shone, the Marlborough Cricket Club ground was looking its very best and...

But this is not a detailed report of play during the Wednesday evening (August 3) fixture between a Marlborough Cricket Club eleven and the Town Mayor's team - which from time to time seemed to exceed eleven players.

It can be reported that in this match of 15 eight-ball overs a-side, the Mayor's team reached the creditable score of 80 - only to be overhauled after eight overs and the loss of just two wickets by the Marlborough Cricket Club team.  A very comfortable win for the home team!

It was said that the Marlborough Cricket Club's team had just two members who had found a berth in their first eleven.   The Club obviously has, as I think sports writers say, talent in depth.  What can be said for sure is that the match was played in the best of cricketing spirits.

The fixture had a clear charitable aim: to raise money to help refugees settled in Berlin - mainly from the cricketing nation of Afghanistan - to get the cricket equipment and facilities they need.  A cause that had come to the attention of St Mary's Curate the Rev Dr Janneke Blokland.

The match raised £615. That is enough to buy a bag of kit for a team of the budding Afghan cricketers of Berlin - and with a bit of money to spare.

Captains Ed Puddick & Alex Hadcock and a coinCaptains Ed Puddick & Alex Hadcock and a coin Andrew Studdert-Kennedy turns the ball safely away Andrew Studdert-Kennedy turns the ball safely away Did the man from the Outside Chance get an outside edge?Did the man from the Outside Chance get an outside edge? The Mayor's team score The Mayor's team score

Town Mayor Noel Barrett-Morton's team should not, your reporter was told, be described as a scratch team.  

It included four members of 4MI Battalion from Bulford - the Battalion with close links to Marlborough. They were Alex Hadcock (who took over the captaincy from Councillor Justin Cook who was not sure of enough of the rules), Reza Greaves, Michael Phillips, and Craig Dudgeon.

The Rev Canon Andrew Studdert-Kennedy (who should have been at the Test Match, and impressed the crowd with his batting), Jim Patterson (Councillor Fogg's son-in-law), Jason Hull and Scott Light (Councillor Alec Light's grandsons), Jamie Lloyd (whose parents live in Minal and got drafted while visiting the Outside Chance - where Scot is the manager), Sean Watts (who took a brilliant catch) and Mark Oliver and his son Oscar - father impressed at the crease and his son's bowling and fielding were most impressive.

A Cook delivery...A Cook delivery... Oscar Oliver fieldingOscar Oliver fielding Suddenly the Club team had wonSuddenly the Club team had won Captain Ed Puddick, the trophy and the Town Mayor Captain Ed Puddick, the trophy and the Town Mayor

The umpires were Henry Pearson (Andrew Studdert-Kennedy's predecessor at St Mary's who agreed to umpire so long as he could carry on listening to the Test Match through his earpieces!) He was joined by a variety of ad hoc substitutes and then by Derek Fuller-Webster.

Neville Cardus this is not:  but some cheeky running and some good strokes (especially from the Rector, Michael Phillips and Mark Oliver) had the lights on the scoreboard showing a steady increase in the Mayor's team's score.  (I doubt Mr Cardus would ever have committed to paper two apostrophes in succession.)  

When the Mayor's team took to the field they seemed, after a quick conference between rival captains Alex Hadcock and Ed Puddick, to have been allowed twelve fielders.  Some quick changes in the field - in a sort of running conveyor belt of substitutions - managed to keep the number of fielders in the plus-or-minus twelve range.

Justin Cook took to the field - and bowled an over.  But despite an over from Oscar Oliver (which I think produced a six from the Club team) and some very diligent fielding, the Marlborough Cricket Team made it comfortably to the total set by the Mayor's team.

The teams were applauded off the field by a good crowd and the Club's quick total left plenty of time for the beer and for raising money through a raffle and a spot-the-cricket-ball competition.

The latter was said to be an easy challenge for anyone with a fair knowledge of cricket.  Your reporter thought the batsman - one of the Club's top scorers - might have edged the ball back over his head...surely not a very good call.

The assembled players - Marlborough Cricket Club to the left and the large contingent of the Mayor's team to the rightThe assembled players - Marlborough Cricket Club to the left and the large contingent of the Mayor's team to the right

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