With two Mary's and a Joy on the pitch things were bound to get festive at Linford Christie this Saturday. And when Santa showed up with his suitcase of toys we all new it would be great day.
In preparation for the match we all made a list of the naughty and nice things we planned to do during the game.
The match got underway and both teams wanted to show some dominance on the pitch.
However, it was Chiswick who made the breakthrough, with a clever reverse pass from Rhi to Bex and then Bex finding Harriet on the left post for Chiswick's first present of the day.
Chiswick's second came from a broken down corner, where Bex was also provider for Ceilidh on the left post again.
The second half started with Sonning more determined to hold possession and move forward. But some great screening from forwards and midfield created pressure from Chiswick. Rhi picked up a gift of a turnover at the top of the circle - which she promptly converted into the back of the net.
Chiswick sustained some serious pressure in the second half - including a series of defensive corners. But maintained composure and a clean sheet. An early start to Christmas for the ladies 1's.
It finished 3-0 to Chiswick.
MOM: KD and Harriet
It started with a cold cold day at Linford Christie, that not even the lc's (cold) changing rooms nor the warm up could thaw Kylie out. Nevertheless we went out all guns blazing ready to take home the 3 points up for grabs.
After a slower start than anticipated the ladies stepped up, which resulted in Lili King-Harman managing to stay on her feet and with a reverse stick shot smashing the ball into the back of the net.
Half time score Chiswick 1 - West Hampstead 0.
Coach Nick Richard's half time talk (and haribo) had us ready to go, and spurred us on for a more lively start to the second half. However the opposition were awarded a short corner and managed to equalise. This just made the ladies even more hungry for a win. A great strike from Sarah Blackburn followed by a touch from Zoe Jupp secured a second goal for Chiswick.
The team continued to pass the ball wonderfully, driving forward with such gusto, their eyes always on the prize resulting in our excellent forwards intercepting the ball from the oppos 16 yard hit out then driving into the D with stupendous shot from Zoe Jupp. Gooooaaalll!
Well done ladies. Great to leave the game with the 3 points and slightly warmer.
Final score Chiswick 3 - West Hampstead 1
MOM - Zoe Jupp... Great goals
DOD - Kylie Burnett... Apparently being cold is a dickable offence.... or maybe it was all the moaning!
Captain Lizzy laid down the rules this week and quite rightly so, us 3s need a bit of direction at times. Everyone responded so well. In fact 16 people made themselves available to play. Things were looking good. That’s until black Friday, a dodgy kebab, some crazy conference, ice skating and a very inconsiderate child sharing their stomach bug saw most of the team either spending their money or hugging their toilet seat. From 16 we were down to 11 and were about to take on third in the league, if half the team didn’t already have the shits, the other half were certainly shitting themselves at this point knowing just how much running lay ahead! It didn’t help when Charlotte text to say she had locked herself IN her house, but we were all just very grateful when the update came through that she had located her back door and had escaped in time for pushback. The team also took some comfort from the fact that Nat had, for the first time this season, remembered her stick, although we can’t help but think she probably had something to do with the riots she witnessed in Tesco by misplacing some item of hers in the store where it shouldn’t have been. Even Angela was on time today…. Well loosely speaking, she was there to warm up.
OK so the game, the hockey side of it was great from both sides. A very pleasant opposition and the hardest team (we don’t count Ashford btw) we have played all season. The game could have gone either way, but a nice calm run by Charlotte saw the only goal of the game being scored. Saying that our defence was solid and Alice definitely kept us in the game with numerous saves! It was lovely to have you Alice, but Nikki, no more dodgy kebabs next week please! Nat can you also work on your p spot pirouettes please?
On a more serious note it was lovely to have Carla back after her epic clearance of the ball with her head the other week and to see Claire back in fine form after the arrival of little Hugh!
You always know it’s been a good game when haribo, cake and beer feature.
Final result 1 – 0 to Chiswick
MOM – Alice, brilliant saves
DOD – Ellie, for saying everyone rocked! Go figure!
Special thanks of course to our impact players; Jenni and Grace, Cookie for umpiring and our lovely supporters!
PHC Chiswick Ladies 4s v Hampstead and Westminster Ladies 6s
Going into Saturday’s match the ladies 4s knew they were in for a tough one, historically Hampstead and Westminster have proved difficult opposition and this week was no different. Right from the first push back the ladies felt the pressure of the strong opposition, with each pass closed in on and little time to make decisions on the ball, to win Chiswick knew they had to play their socks off. With a sub in each line, Chiswick did have the luxury of fresh legs but this proved to not quite be enough.
While Chiswick had a few opportunities early on, and even a penalty corner, it wasn’t to be and the first goal came from Hampstead and Westminster. A brilliant strike from the top with a nicely angled deflection had the defence and keeper beat. The ladies in blue kept positive at the restart, and made several attacking drives into the opposition’s D. Kate Cato made a great attacking play, coming into the circle from the right, and finding a foot, with advantage being played Stacey Nevin scooped up a saved shot for another shot on goal, unfortunately it crossed the line moments after the umpire signalled for a penalty corner. Another unsuccessful corner ended the half and the ladies remained 1-0 down.
The half time chat focused on keeping composure, making the use of the subs, and retaining possession. While the ladies 4s achieved this they still found themselves on the back foot. Hampstead and Westminster had a break away, and while Alice Taylor-Bennett managed to save the first shot with an impressive dive, she was beaten with a flick shot. The third and final blow for Chiswick was delivered soon after, the opposition crowded the D and while the girls in blue held and made some impressive saves, the oppo found the backboard once more.
Chiswick kept their heads held high, and remained fighting until the end, but with the final whistle there was nothing left to do but accept the loss, look forward to a positive training session and prepare for the rematch later in the season!
Final score: PHC Chiswick Ladies 4s - 3, Hampstead and Westminster Ladies 6s - 0
MOM: Alice Taylor-Bennett for some brilliant saves under pressure
DOD: Gemma Mcintosh for overzealous and high volume penalty corner calls
PHC Chiswick Ladies 4s v Winchmore Hill Ladies 2s
This week was a big battle in the league, as 4th placed Chiswick took on 2nd placed Winchmore Hill - separated in the league by just one point - at the Linford pitch. Having narrowly lost 3-2 to the same opposition in a pre-season friendly, we knew this was an important game for us if we were to achieve our ambitions this season.
The first half however was somewhat disastrous for the girls in blue. The team weren't clicking and te ball wasn't getting out to the wings nearly enought. The opposition were dominating possession and Man of the Match (GK Alice Taylor-Bennet) kept the team in teh game with a series of crucial saves. Despite being up against it, the 4s did well to largely keep the oppo at bay and limit them to just one goal (a goalmouth scrap that didn't go Chiswick's way).
At half time, we knew we weren't playing anywhere near our best hockey and we used the break to have a really strong chat about playing smarter and getting ourselves back into the game. The wonderful Jenni Holman proved she was still as wise as ever despite losing her wisdom teeth the day before, and gave great support and direction from the sideline, along with hero umpire Clare and our much missed Laura Murphy.
So afte the break, teh 4s came out determined to totally reset and we managed to play like a completely different team. Using the centre far more effectively as a pivot, the ball made it out to the winfs and Emma, Sophie (on a fab debut despite confusing the yellow and white lines) and Carine made a great job of running the ball up the sidelines. The equaliser came from a beautifully worked move and Laura Bryant executed a clinical finish to level the score at 1-1. Now feeling far more positive, the 4s sought to capitalise on this new found possesion. We managed to press their free hits really effectively, and trapped them in their own half.
With some positive calling from the sidelines, the 4s knew the 3s points were there for the taking if we could keep the positive play up and stay strong at the back. Our other debutant Renee did a brilliant job of closing down the left channel and the winning goal came from a reverse stick tap-in by Toni McGovern (the 4s second reverse stick goal in two weeks!). Despite a last minute scare, the 4s managed to keep the score there and celebrated an epic comeback which takes us to second in the league, and just one point behind leaders Staines (our oppo in two weeks).
Final score: PHC Chiswick Ladies 4s - 2, Winchmore Hill and Enfield Ladies 2s -1
Scorers: Laura Bryant, Toni McGovern
MoM: Alice Taylor-Bennett
DoD: Sophie Green
The whilstle blew and Chiswick were quick off the mark. Hungry for a goal, they spent the first 15 minutes attacking hard. It wasn't long before Mo managed to get the ball across to skipper Helen who (from what we could see in defence) hit the ball in the back of the goal - GOAL - unfortunately the ball had been passed into Helen's foot on the way in - NO goal. Another attempt on oppo's goal was made by a quick dash via Gillian's sharp stick skills to Helen only to go wide & miss again.
The close calls woke the oppo up who made strong counter attacks & managed to get themselves a short corner which their captain converted into a goal. On a high, Ashford continued to attack - with a few key players on their squad making great passes, which unfortunately lead to another goal.
Whether it was Ashford's new bouncy pitch or whether it was just a good day to take up another sport, at one point Alex took a side line hit, that got raised & the ball comically landed in Freya's nether region...a missed opportunity for a "you've been framed clip" - that was the DoD nomination sorted for the time being.
2-0 to Ashford at half time, Chiswick were down but by no means out. The 6s persevered with some great channeling & held possession well, making it difficult for Ashford to attack again.
The perseverance paid off with a short corner to be awarded to Chiswick. A great injection followed from Gillian & using tactics covered in training, Mo secured the goal!
Pumped up, L6's went on the hunt for another to draw 2 a piece before final whistle but we were denied once more when Mo accidentally hit the opposition in the leg seconds before passing the ball to Helen who scored - AGAIN the goal sadly did not count & although we kept pushing Ashford's strong defence kept us out.
The match sadly ended with 3 into the oppo's backboard to Chiswick L6's, with only 1 counting. Final score - 2-1 to Ashford. A lonely goal to L6's but the girls went home feeling a million dollars having played their best hockey yet.
MoM: Gillian Kerr for great play throughout the match!
DoDs: Alex for playing "golf" & landing a birdie on Freya's nether regions & Helen for playing football displaying her keepy uppy stick skills while running down the wing, trying to 'kick' a goal in & for 'diving' numerous times :)
PHC Chiswick Ladies 4s v Old Uxonians Ladies 1s
It wasn't the ladies day this Saturday, with a squad of 12 of which three were recovering from colds (we blame the rain last weekend) we already knew it was going to be a tough one. But when five minutes into play Stacey Nevin was sent to the benches with a suspected fracture in her foot from a wayward ball, we knew ice packs weren't going to do the trick, and now we were truly facing an uphill battle.
The ladies carried on however with a lot of attacking play, and with Jenni Holman feeding into the circle the ladies came away with a penalty corner. Yssie Richards stepped up to inject her first corner for a senior squad with nail bitingly close results. A great injection then a right slip saw a shot on goal only narrowly cleared by the keeper. The Chiswick ladies continued to put the pressure on the Old Uxonions and spent the majority of the first half in the attacking 25, however with a quick break the Old Uxonions suddenly exposed gaps and left Alice Taylor-Bennett one on one with an attacker. The keeper was beat, resulting in Chiswick down 1-0 at half time.
The half time talk unfortunately did nothing to change Chiswick’s luck, a plastic bag malfunction left co-captain Gemma McIntosh scrambling to pick up all the half eaten oranges she scattered across the pitch while the teams waited for the restart. At least that sorted the Dick of the Day nomination. Once restarted Chiswick again dominated possession and territory but with another break were soon having to defend a short corner. A lovely strike by the visitors resulted in the disappointing twack of the backboard and Chiswick were 2-0 down. Trying to keep their heads up, the ladies in blue fought hard through the midfield, with Chloe Hole and Carina Carter running their socks off, and distributing the ball nicely down the wings. Kate Cato made some lovely breaks into the circle, but after her third shot went narrowly wide yet again it seemed it just wasn’t to be. Gemma McIntosh and Angela Li also added to the near misses tally, with shots missing only by centimetres. Frustrated groans could be heard from the supporters, the ladies 3s plus team husband, but even with the side-line support the ladies 4s couldn’t convert the attacking play to goals. A beautifully injected, stick stopped (thanks ladies 1s for helping with stick stopping), and struck ball was our closest attempt, but even our goal machine Georgie Wilson couldn’t convert as she found the keepers pads in the short corner play. Old Uxonions delivered the final blow with another quick break, and strong shot, while the umpires had to confirm whether the attackers actually hit the ball within the D, the stopped time and referral established the ladies 4s fears, as they finished 3-0 down.
Not the result the ladies were looking for, but with a lot to work on in training and plenty more games to play, they will be back fit and fighting.
Final score: PHC Chiswick Ladies 4s - 0, Old Uxonians Ladies 1s - 3
Man of the match: Yssie Richards, great injections in short corners plus some lovely defending down the right.
Dick of the Day: Gemma McIntosh. Keep the half time oranges under control.
Chiswick dig deep to continue fabulous winning strike!
The game started off at a slow pace probably due to the unexpected early morning start and the birds having more action on the pitch than the players… what a load of rubbish is an understatement – the pitch was literally coated in rubbish!
The umpires started the game off and they never seemed to stop blowing their whistle, both teams quickly learnt or maybe not the 5 metre rule. Chiswick got the game underway with a nice goal -slipping through the keeper’s legs which neither team seemed to know much about.
Despite the tiredness throughout the Chiswick ranks the team survived the multiple attacks from the West Hampstead team and the defenders showed their true brilliance once again with Chiswick maintaining the 1-0 advantage at the end of the first half. That did not mean that either team came out unscathed both teams were given multiple warnings for the 5 metre rule with the threat of cards in the second half.
This threat soon became reality with 2 green cards be awarded to West Hampstead players in quick concession. Chiswick did not let this phase their game plan they slotted away a second goal with a perfected short corner routine – however this did not come without controversy with a 5 minute interval the umpire decided to maintain his decision of a goal despite the West Hampstead complaints. (Next time we suggest the netting is properly attached)
Riled with this anger West Hampstead threw everything they had at the tiring but confident Chiswick team – quickly a goal came which sent nervousness around the Chiswick camp but of course Denton was there to relief this tension and kindly created greater space between the teams with a 3-1 lead.
As any sports fixture the game is not over till the final whistle and West Hampstead used this to their advantage. Their captain was sent off with a yellow card for continual offences of not abiding to the 5 metre rule by her team – but this did not deter them West Hampstead were yet again picking away at the Chiswick defence and managed to squeeze a very well worked goal from the half way line.
With a 3-2 lead and 5 minutes… the tension was high within both teams – to maintain 2nd in the league Chiswick needed a win! To take prime position and displace Chiswick West Hampstead had to win. Thankfully Chiswick showed their true leading spirit and soaked up the West Hampstead pressure to take the victory home.
Not the easiest match for Chiswick ladies 3s but yet again we definitely displayed the passion, drive and winning spirit within the team to come away with the victory!!
Chiswick (a.k.a The Plastics) arrived at the home of Hampstead & Westminster buoyed by their positive performance against Banbury the previous week, but determined to see the result this week fall in their favour.
The Plastics gathered together before the game in the changing room where Coach Pras and Bex (Regina) prepped the team making full use of the Burn Book to set the tone. Excited to be playing on a water based pitch, opinions soon changed when it became apparent there was a small problem, the pitch was covered in a sludgy brown mess. Undeterred by the, sludgy brown mess, Chiswick set about their warm up.
The first half saw Hampstead & Westminster control much of the possession and territory which meant they entered the half time break 2 goals in the lead.
At the break, Coach Pras and Captain Crane came to the rescue by refocusing the team with some words of wisdom, sending The Plastics back out to do battle. Within 5 minutes of the second half starting, Captain Crane sent a searching ball up the field finding Regina who turned the defender and swept the ball over the oncoming keeper. A short corner strike from Helen Taylor pulled The Plastics level at 2-2. Chiswick had the momentum and Hampstead and Westminster were rocking. Two further goals came from a clever run from Alex Earnshaw, whose shot was saved but followed up by the tenacious Harriet Stevenson and the next followed quickly in similar fashion, again a clever run to the far post was picked out by Regina where a patient Ceilidh Walker was waiting to put The Plastics 4-2 up. Hampstead & Westminster were somewhat shell shocked to have conceded 4 goals in one half, however managed to gather their composure to fire home with minutes to go, the final score 4-3 to The Plastics. It was an inspired second half from Chiswick, which made being covered in the sludgy brown mess, worth it in the end.
MOM: Bex (Regina George) Smith
DOD: Harriet – shoelace gate
PHC Chiswick Ladies 6's v Eastcote Ladies 4s
Buoyed by a good start to the season, the Ladies 6s went into this match expecting a better result but alas, it was not to be. Eastcote proved to be a tough opposition with confident passing, tight marking and good stick work. Nerves crept into the Chiswick team and panic passing ensued, resulting in Eastcote being 1 up by ...half time.
Reassuring words from team coach Norma (and some choice words from keeper Nikki) at change of ends put fire in the bellies of the Chiswick ladies and they came out fighting in the second half. The ladies in blue were opening up the second half hoping to level up but a lucky second goal slipped in past Chiswick's keeper Nikki soon into play. By this point, Chiswick ladies were hungry for goals and not happy to take home nothing. A beautiful run ensued down the left wing by Gillian culminated in a perfectly weighted pass into the D which was sweetly taken in by captain Helen Lee, giving the 6's their first goal. Confidence was up and all felt a goal to draw level was imminent. Sadly, hopes were dashed by a lucky Eastcote ball lifted over keeper Nikki's hand pads, taking the score to 3-1 to Eastcote in the final ten minutes. Unfortunately there was no way back for Chiswick.
Although disappointed by their first loss of the season proper, the team left the pitch feeling positive about their general performance and optimistic for the rest of the season.
Final score: PHC Chiswick Ladies 6s - 1 Eastcote Ladies 4s - 3
MOM - Joint nominees Gillian and Freya for all round solid play
DOD - Mo for concentrating too hard on getting to the pub instead of collecting her kit at the end of the match