Easton says his Raiders side know what to expect ahead of season opening weekend
PUBLISHED: 07:00 15 September 2018
Everyone Active Raiders head coach Sean Easton says his side know what to expect as they head into the first weekend of the National League South One season.
The Romford-based club head to Berkshire to face Bracknell Bees on Saturday (6pm), before returning to the Sapphire Ice & Leisure Centre for a local derby against London rivals Streatham IHC the following night (5.15pm).
Raiders lost 5-2 to the Bees at home and 6-3 in Bracknell in two pre-season challenge matches last weekend.
And Easton is keen to get off to a strong start by putting some points on the board on the first weekend of competitive hockey.
He said: “The first league weekend will be the familiar Bracknell Bees, so we know what to expect from them and how we want to play and try to put our first league points on the board.”
The 32-year-old coach also revealed he learnt a lot from their challenge matches against the Bees last weekend, adding: “Last weekend highlighted for us a lot of positive things, but also a lot of work to be done yet. It was our first competitive weekend of hockey, even though we started training three weeks back and played in a Legends game and a challenge game against our Divisiion Two team.
“But nothing can match actually playing games against our own league opponents.”
Former Chelmsford Chieftains coach Easton says he came away pleased with the team’s performance, but says his side must take their chances.
“I came away pleased, that despite our match fitness and the fact that 40 per cent of our team is different to last season, that we matched their work rate and skill set,” he added.
“I thought we skated a lot better then Bracknell and the difference over the weekend was they took their chances.
“We’re a stronger team then last season.”
Easton is also excited to host the club’s first derby match at their new Sapphire Ice & Leisure Centre home when they welcome Jeremy Cornish’s Streatham side on Sunday.
“Streatham will be a good game as well, they’ve signed some experienced faces, and it’ll be the first derby game at the Sapphire which is exciting,” he said.