|Date||24 March 2018|
|Result||W 4 - 1|
This week’s hockey report:
YARDLEY 4 DROITWICH 1
Yardley saved their best performance of the season until what turned out to the their last game of the season in the Warwick Printing MRHA Hockey League, West Midlands Division 1.
Work commitments and injuries meant that Yardley started the game against the team just above them in the league, with ten players. The numerical disadvantage did not seem to worry Yardley as they set about their task in earnest, setting the early pace of the game. In spite of this it was the visitors who missed an early chance to grab the lead. Yardley’s pace on the break was causing Droitwich some problems and after a brilliant breakout from defence, the ball found its way to Noor Zaman who went on to beat a couple of defenders before rounding the keeper and calmly slotting the ball home. Yardley have not enjoyed scoring the first goal in many games this season and this buoyed the team to look for more. Another attack initiated by influential skipper Zach Jarvis led to Noor getting on the score-sheet for the second time in the game. In spite of these setbacks, Droitwich kept on pressing forward, trying to make their extra man count. They forced several short corners before half-time but could not make any of them count and Yardley took a deserved lead into the break.
At the start of the second half Yardley continued to press forward, making light of being a man short and they were unlucky not to add another during this period. Yardley’s positive forward play was rewarded with a series of penalty corners, the third of which led to Robin Stanley firing home a fierce shot to extend the home side’s advantage. Amazingly, after their season of woes, Yardley added a brilliant fourth when Jeevan Chagger got hold of a great cross from the right and swept the ball into the goal. Droitwich, to their credit, kept to their game plan and even forced the Yardley keeper, Neal Makepeace into some spectacular saves and clearances. Eventually, the visitors got some consolation when they scored from one of their many attempts from other corners.
Droitwich pressed on looking for more, but there was no denying an excellent end of season performance from the whole of the Yardley side. Perhaps it’s a pity that they will be unable to build on that performance again this season, but with the Open League beckoning, Yardley can look forward to some more evenly matched games.