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Havering given a finishing lesson by high-flying Old Southendians in latest loss

PUBLISHED: 12:00 05 December 2019

Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019

Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019

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Havering were given something of a lesson by a clinical Old Southendians side in East Premier B at Campion on Saturday.

Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019

Having avoided the customary slow start which has been an issue in recent weeks, they fell behind when the visitors fired into the far corner from the top of the D.

Another lapse in concentration allowed Southendians to double their lead as an unmarked player finished at the far post.

But Havering remained competitive and Connor Poulain saw a penalty corner strike saved, before swapping passes with Paul Dover at another and flicking into the net to halve the deficit.

Any hopes of a comeback were squashed early in the second half as Southendians scored twice in the opening five minutes, from a well-worked set-piece from outside the D as a well-executed deflection beat Lee Bennett and in similar fashion after a move down the left.

Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019

Havering hit back with their best 20-minute period of the match, forcing a number of excellent saves from the visiting keeper, who denied Poulain on three separate occasions from penalty corners.

Youngster Andy Meehan twice had efforts blocked on the line, denying him his first goals in the first team, and Southendians broke away to go 5-1 up.

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But Havering got a late consolation as Paul Johnson deflected in off the post from Poulain's pass at another penalty corner ahead of a trip to Upminster for their last match before the Christmas break on Saturday.

Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019

They won 2-0 when the two sides met in September.

The seconds conceded late on to draw 2-2 with a youthful Saffron Walden third team in Division Four.

Havering had the better of a goalless first half, with Roger Hiett forcing a good save and Sam Green hitting the post from penalty corners.

But the visitors took the lead against the run of play soon after the restart when an innocuous through ball struck a post and rebounded back into play, straight to a forward who could not miss.

Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019Havering HC vs Old Southendian HC, East Region League Field Hockey at Campion School on 30th November 2019

James Walker volleyed in from the left to level and Havering took the lead when Zak Nerukar deflected home a short corner.

Walden kept pushing for an equaliser and the pressure told when a Havering clearance was intercepted and clinically dispatched to square matters.

The thirds drew 1-1 at lowly Maldon seconds in their Division Six outing.

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