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Romford men suffer late woe against Walden, but women pick up more league points

PUBLISHED: 12:00 05 October 2018

Romford score their first goal during Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018

Romford score their first goal during Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018

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Romford’s men suffered late heartbreak in a 3-2 loss to Saffron Walden thirds in East League Division Four South East.

Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018

After a bright start they were pushed back into their own half and saw the visitors open the scoring.

But Romford managed to build some momentum, only to see an Ashley Meyer hit rebound off a Walden player’s stick into his own face, opening up a large gash about the eye.

Once play resumed, Romford got back on level terms through Meyer’s well-struck shot late in the first half and the hosts regained control after the restart.

They took the lead with 10 minutes left when Alfie Harvey’s pinpoint reverse-stick pass found Meyer to sweep home and saw man of the match Tom Woodman produce a string of saves to deny Walden in the closing stages.

Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018

However, a lapse in concentration allowed the visitors to square matters when an aerial pass found their forward to beat Woodman and, from the last attack of the game, Walden capitalised on another mistake to snatch a last-gasp winner.

Romford visit Witham seconds this weekend.

There was better news for the seconds, who beat their Wapping rivals 2-0 in Division Eight at the John Orwell Centre.

Both sides had enjoyed winning starts to the new season a week earlier and Romford looked comfortable in possession early on, taking the lead on 24 minutes when Jim Venus picked his spot to smash home.

Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018

And Phil Barlow held firm in goal, behind defenders Dan Harrison, man of the match Mike Walton, David Butcher and Russell Parslow to keep Wapping at bay.

Romford turned the screw in the second half, with the returning Jamie Norris stretching the game in attack.

And they doubled their lead when Rob Smith chased a loose ball and slotted past Wapping’s onrushing keeper to seal the points and a third clean sheet ahead of Saturday’s clash with Braintree at Bower Park.

The thirds lost 6-2 to Braintree fifths, but Romford’s women drew 1-1 with Crostyx thirds in their first match of the Essex League Division Two season.

Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018Romford HC Ladies vs Crostyx HC Ladies 3rd XI, Essex Women's League Field Hockey at Bower Park Academy on 29th September 2018

Leah Butcher’s great goal put them ahead inside 10 minutes and they forced a string of short corners in a dominant display, but the Crostyx keeper held firm with several fine saves to hold them to a share of the spoils.

Romford’s seconds had a 1-0 win over Southend & Benfleet fourths in Division Five.

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