Upminster empty-handed at East London
09:00 23 September 2016
©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468
Late goals lead to heavy defeat
Upminster’s men were the architects of their own downfall as they suffered a 4-0 defeat to East London on the first day of the new East League Division One season at the Olympic Park.
The home side began brightly at Lee Valley Hockey & Tennis Centre, with quick passing and strong pressing putting Upminster on the back foot.
Then, just when the visitors looked to be settling down, a lapse in concentration allowed East London to open the scoring past a helpless Phil Dixon.
Upminster came back into the game and pressed the hosts well for the rest of the half, but both sides struggled with short corner play.
And while both had good attacks and spells of play, neither looked particularly threatening when it came to play in the circle.
The visitors started the second half brightly and some good play from the returning Eamon Devaney saw them pressing for an equaliser, with Steve Wright and Dave Hadsley missing decent opportunities.
And the match remained in the balance until the last five minutes, which Upminster will look to forget as quickly as possible.
Pushing forward in search of a leveller, the visitors were made to pay for their profligacy in front of goal as East London doubled their lead.
And after Upminster changed formation for the closing stages, they conceded another two goals while chasing the game and will hope to get their season up and running when Bishop’s Stortford visit Coopers tomorrow (Saturday).
The seconds slumped to a 9-0 home defeat against their East London counterparts, but the thirds provided some cheer with derby success against Havering seconds in their Division Four encounter at Campion.
A depleted home side had lots of possession early on, without creating any clear chances, and Upminster’s Phil Hudson was denied by a great save and the crossbar.
Then a superb break from Upminster from within their own half saw Will Murphy carry the ball into the D and time his pass perfectly to Dance who finished off a fine move.
Greg Mawdsley pounced on a loose ball inside the Upminster D soon after to level, before tempers began to raise and a couple of green cards were shown.
Upminster made the home side pay as Murphy and Dance struck to put them 3-1 up at half time, only for Mawdsley and Mike Hinton to reply after the restart to level matters with 15 minutes remaining.
Havering looked favourites at this point and continued to push for a winner, but they were undone at the back as Upminster broke and man of the match Dance fed Murphy to net his second goal of the game to secure a 4-3 victory.
Johnny Appleton was named defender of the match for Upminster, who will look to capitalise on their early season promise when they entertain East London fourths at Coopers tomorrow (Saturday).
Upminster fourths went down 3-2 at Rochford in Division Six, but the fifths beat Havering fourths 3-1 at Coopers in a Division Eight derby.
The women lost 2-1 at home to Sevenoaks seconds in East One South, but the seconds won 2-0 at Essex Premier rivals Maldon and the thirds beat Brentwood seconds 2-1 in Division One.
The fourths lost 2-0 at Witham seconds in Division Three, while the fifths start their season at Colchester tomorrow (Saturday).