National Cup Run Over For Wapping Printers at National League Side
Brave, flowing and impish performance from Wapping’s premier mixed side not enough to knockout one of the pre-tournament favourites Holcombe.
This Printers team has been called many things; Masters of Mixed, Butcherers of Broxbourne, Slayers of Dragons, Slaughterers of St Ives, and (most factually) Champions of Essex, but on a fresh Sunday morning in April they travelled to Kent seeking to add Hangers of Holcombe to their aliases.
And boy, did the girls and guys in their imperious white strips get off to a good start! Almost instantly from the push back the visitors had the lead when Kate Radford put her body on the line to finish off a beautiful move down the Wapping left at full stretch, pulling her hamstring in the process, before Holcombe had known what had hit them.
Combining well together in that move were Sandra Akinbolu, Dom Oliver, Lucy Todd and Oliver Bull. They were soon at it again, this time transferring the ball to the right through Suzie Ogilvie and a brave Radford, before a good chance was missed first by Bull and then Lou Song at the back post.
Confidence was flowing through the visiting players after a great start, but with national league players in their squad, the hosts also looked like they were up to the challenge.
Halfway into the first period this confidence appeared well placed when they got an equaliser through their stand out (and mildly selfish) player, beating first ‘keeper Joe Trickett and sweeper Dudley Spiers, before just evading stand-in skipper Charley Wright on the line.
Yet the Slayer’s wouldn't lie down, and moments after the re-start they were back in front, courtesy of Michael Bolle. The forward collected a ball from M2s colleague Joe Carpenter and proceeded to beat every defender that came near him before rounding the ‘keeper to slot home superbly.
Wapping managed to weather the storm for another ten minutes, before the breach was broken again by Holcombe. Another goal for the pink-stick wielding man, who beat Wright one-on-one before smashing past Trickett to draw the scores level.
The score stayed the same until the break, giving both sides a chance to re-group. After the break, it was Wapping again who looked the most dangerous, especially on the break.
However, chances went begging in front of goal, a tale told too often by some Wapping teams this year, opening the door for a side who needed no invitation.
Holcombe’s forward claimed their third, and his hat-trick, with a deft touch from a ball into the D that should have been dealt with by the Wapping defence, before the same man converted a Penalty Stroke, conceded by man of the match Wright, to make it 4-2 ten minutes later.
It was clear the hosts respected Wapping’s threat, wasting time once ahead and leaving their strongest players on the pitch until their fourth was converted.
The visitors didn’t give up and continued to create chances but could just not convert them, despite the presence of such firepower as Edward Fry, Bee Armstrong and Barbara Lo Giudice rotating through the forward line.
Unfortunately for Wapping, the game had to come to an end, along with their run in the England Hockey National Mixed Cup. It was a fantastic effort and credit must go to everyone who played in each round, and those who made it possible by umpiring our games – thank you!