LX v Ipswich
on Sunday 22nd April
It was a scorching hot day at Ipswich's Henley Road Sports Club. The first half saw both sides sparring with each other, probing for weaknesses to exploit, but in general, the sides were matched in defence and attack. In an early break, a fierce cross from Sharpe just eluded Cochrane at the far post and the half ended goalless. After the break and a well-earned drink, LX upped the pace and deservedly took the lead from a short corner. Having tried the stick stop and shot on a couple of occasions, French tried the open side option to Ballard, who cleverly returned it to the penalty spot for French to fire home.
Soon afterwards, Ipswich were awarded a penalty stroke following a collision in the circle, but Dures in goal dealt capably with the flick to deny the home side. It was not long however, before Ipswich did level the scores, when a short corner was fired home from close range after the ball had ricocheted round the circle. In the final period of the game, LX's fitness and endurance began to pay off with passing and possession. Although Ballard had to retire with a pulled muscle, team manager Andy Barnes came on to fill the gap.
Another good run from Sharpe was rewarded when he found Cochrane in front of goal. After his first effort was saved, he persevered and nudged the ball over the line. Cochrane was again on target just before full time. Following a flowing move, involving French,Sharpe and Stowell, the ball was worked across the circle for Cochrane to sweep home and complete a 3-1 victory.
Neil Major put in a commanding performance at right defence in a team effort that should hearten the selectors and team manager. A professional display in very hot conditions against younger and well organisde opposition saw every squad member giving their all. After the match, LX were well entertained by the evergreen Johnny Gordon and Ipswich HC with a superb hog roast.
Team: Alan Dures, Neil Major, Adrian Robertson, Peter Crayford, Mike Surridge, John French, Ken Wilcock, Norman Ballard, Peter Sharpe, StephenStowell, Rod Cochrane