REDDITCH clinched Summer League glory in dramatic style as a 5-0 victory over Pershore proved enough to pip Stourport Veterans to the title.
The Kingfishers’ success at Pershore ensured they finished level on points with second placed Stourport, who won their final match 5-2 against Droitwich, but had a goal difference two inferior to Redditch’s.
Redditch made a bright start to their game as they moved the ball around quickly in an attempt to test the home team, who only had ten players on the pitch at that time.
With gaps opening up and the spaces being exploited, Redditch took the lead when Callum Pace was on hand to place the ball past the keeper.
With Pershore know up to full strength, they started to test the Redditch defence, but the three men at the back – Ade Young, Ben Haresign and Tom Dunkley – all stood strong and did not allow the attackers a moment’s peace on the ball.
Down the other end of the field, the home team once again went down to ten men when their goalkeeper was adjudged to have handled the ball outside his D – earning him two minutes off the pitch – but Pershore held out during their period of numerical disadvantage and reached half time just 1-0 down.
The second half started with Redditch on the hunt for goals and that is what happened as Harry Capewell fired the ball past the keeper for his team’s second goal.
Redditch then began to dictate the rhythm of the game with quick passing and good movement off the ball, giving players like Connor Adams and Dan Waite time in the box to get shots away, with Adams firing a half-volley into the goal to put the visitors 3-0 up.
This became 4-0 soon afterwards as some great play from Matt Walton and the midfield pairing of Jacob Beard and Andy Billingham set up Waite to finish off the move.
With the game’s end slowly drawing near, there was still time for another goal, which came in the shape of a Beard drag flick past the keeper into the left-hand corner to round off not just a great win and clean sheet, but a great campaign.
Redditch will now look forward to their first winter league fixtures, which will start on Saturday, October 3. Before then, the ladies are in Summer League action throughout August.
Chairman thrilled with success
REDDITCH Hockey Club chairman Tim Gibbs has hailed the efforts of everyone connected with the club following the Summer League triumph.
A youthful Redditch side finished the campaign top of the pile and Gibbs said it made the success all the more fruitful for the club.
“We used a young team as we continue to build for the future and it’s promising looking ahead to see how these players stepped up to the plate,” said Gibbs.
“It has been a steady rebuilding process for us and there any numerous players going into the first team now who were juniors three years ago.
“It has been a struggle at times but achievements like this make it all worthwhile.
“We try and give the town a hockey club to be proud of and we take pride in providing players with a club which is accessible and easy to become involved with.”