Hockey: Chichester can’t grab pride-of-county title against Brighton

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A hiugh-scoring draw for Chichester in the south open premier division one tops this week’s local hockey round-up.

Chichester 4 Brighton 4

South open premier division one

This was a game Chichester badly wanted to win – but they ended up feeling it was a case of two points lost.

Matthew Cox flickered in and out of the game and when he was involved, he proved unstoppable – linking with Andrew Sparshott. The duo scored all four of Chichester’s goals.

Chichester again showed they could play open hockey but were put under early pressure before the sides swapped a goal apiece.

A yellow card for home captain Steve Spear came when he picked a ball high above his shoulder. Chichester managed to keep Brighton at bay with ten players.

With Chichester back to full strength, openings were created by the speed of Sparshott and Cox and the hosts went 2-1 up.

Five minutes later Cox waltzed past the Brighton defence and coolly placed the ball past the Brighton keeper’s near post.

But before the break, Brighton snatched a goal back to keep them in contention.

The second half saw Chichester continue to play slick hockey and once again Cox and Sparshott combined to give Chichester a 4-2 lead. However, Chichester stopped playing as they can.

They put themselves under unnecessary pressure with poor decision-making which gave Brighton the opportunity to attack.

A dubious umpiring decision awarded Brighton a short corner and ill-discipline saw Gerald Cox shown a yellow card. Brighton scored to make it 4-3.

Without great interceptions from Jason Collins, Brighton would have levelled sooner.

As it was, a well-picked ball was kicked out by keeper Godsmark and some one-touch hockey proved too much for Chichester to defend.

Chi Ladies 5 Horsham Ladies 1

Chichester ladies shone once again with an outstanding win over Horsham. Sleek passing and flawless skills led to the first goal by Sarah (Betty) Jessop. From then on Chichester played with vigour.

It was 2-0 with Jessop firing in a reverse-stick shot. A momentary loss of focus allowed Horsham to grab a goal, but Kate Ratecliffe made excellent runs down the left flank allowing Jessop to finish off Horsham.

CHICHESTER: Imogen Hibberd, Kim Howarth, Caroline Burley, Tina Finn, Becca Stemp, Rachel Black, Sarah Jessop, Immy Hibberd, Kate Ratecliffe, Claire Young.

Horsham III 1 Chi Ladies II 0

Chichester put the pressure on from the start and played with purpose and determination.

The home side breached Chichester’s defence when they were awarded a short corner from which they scored.

Chichester were the better team for the majority of the game and had many more short corners than usual.

CHICHESTER: Hlynianski, Banks, Rich, Marks, Helme, Austin, Hudson, Thew, Greenlees, Chaplin, Ursall, Benison.

Horsham IV 5 Chichester Chipmunks 4

Chichester started with a flourish at Horsham.

An early goal from Kathegesu saw Chichester take the lead, followed closely by one from Craig Hindmarsh from the inside right channel. Toby Hindmarsh extended the lead.

Horsham rallied and despite the excellence of Donaldson, they scored twice before the best move of the game saw Hindmarsh find Holden free to drive the ball in to put Chichester into a 4-2 lead at half-time.

Three Horsham goals saw Horsham first stretch the Chichester defence and then strike home their advantage to sneak a good win and a damaging loss for Chichester.

Chichester under-tens continued their development with a fine display at Portsmouth.

They started with solid wins against both Havant (2-1) and Gosport (2-0) before losing 2-0 to City of Portsmouth. They picked themselves up to beat Petersfield 4-0. Callum Peyman, Tabitha Trend and Chrisptopher Clark proved a constant threat.

In a stern test against Fareham, fantastic commitment from Jessica Gleeson and Georgina Wain in midfield saw them harry Fareham and hold out for a fine goalless draw.

This left Chichester to face Haslemere I and II. They conceded two in the first game but rounded the day off with a strong win.

Chichester hosted their traditional pre-Christmas junior tournament featuring under-eight and under-ten teams from Gosport, Fareham, Havant, Petersfield, City of Portsmouth and Haslemere.

The Chichester under-tens shone, overcoming Fareham hard on the heels of a 6-0 defeat of Petersfield. Other notable firsts included back-to-back wins against Haslemere with Trend and Peyman once again finding the net. Sterner tests came against Havant and improving City of Portsmouth.

Chichester under-eights were out in force with two teams in the tournament, with many youngsters experiencing competitive play for the first time.