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Haverhill confident of completing league double

Vicky Steed, left, in action for Haverhill II against Newmarket II, is an injury doubt for the firrst team's match at Huntingdon.''ANL-150118-205818009
Vicky Steed, left, in action for Haverhill II against Newmarket II, is an injury doubt for the firrst team's match at Huntingdon.''ANL-150118-205818009

Haverhill Hockey Club’s first team will hope to inject some impetus into their season when they take on Huntingdon on Saturday.

The first team travel to Kimbolton School for the East League Division Three NW(S) match (3.30pm) with a team they trounced 6-0 in the corresponding fixture on October 18.

The two sides are separated by just goal difference as they sit slap-bang in the middle of the table and Haverhill chairman, Tina Bunch said: “We should win. We should not have lost as many games as we have this season.

“I think its 15 to 20 years since we’ve been in a position where we are not fighting for promotion or preventing relegation so mid-table is not a familiar place for us, so it’s made everything a bit flat because we are not used to it.”

Haverhill may be without striker Vicky Steed and defender Jenny Bradnam due to injury while Anne Read is definitely out, but despite that Bunch is confident ahead of the match.

“We will be a little bit depleted in defence but we should still beat Huntingdon. “

Last weekend Haverhill paid the price for missing another penalty flick — their third miss in a row following the two squandered against Cambridge South — when they went down 2-0 at home to leaders Cambridge City III.

Haverhill were without Steed for the match due to a back injury so employed a more defensive line up but still conceded an early goal.

Just before half-time Haverhill were awarded the penalty stroke, only for Bunch to strike it wide of the goal.

In the second half Bunch deflected a Mandy Williamson short corner just over the bar before the visitors scored a second goal from a well-worked short corner to seal the win.

Bunch said: “It was disappointing, but they are the league leaders and hopefully we will see a few players coming back this week to gain a win.”

Haverhill had some good news this week after the league overturned their 4-1 home defeat to City of Peterborough III on November 15 and instead awarded them three points and a 5-0 win.

The decision was made after Haverhill complained that Peterborough had fielded first and second team players in the match.

The league discovered some Peterborough players had turned out earlier that day for their second XI, explained Bunch, but regulations only permit players from a club to play on the same day for one of their lower ranked teams if they have not already turned out for one of their more senior teams.

On Saturday, Haverhill’s second team will look to make it 16 wins out of 16 in Division Four NW(S) when they take on mid-table Ely City II at the leisure centre (11am).

Last weekend Haverhill had a relatively comfortable 2-0 win at Newmarket III thanks to an Elaine Ward goal from a short corner in the first half and a rare goal from skipper Nicole Bailey in the second half.

Bunch said: “The feedback was that Haverhill didn’t have their best game but Newmarket were well organised and snuffed out opportunities very well.

“I think perhaps after the euphoria of beating (second placed) Newmarket IIs the week before there may have been some complacency.”

Haverhill top the table by eight points form Newmarket II.

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