Oxford 1-4 Banbury
This was a funny game which saw OHC Ladies 3s peak very early on, probably somewhere during our wonderfully orchestrated warm-up, and we hit the first 15 minutes of the game on fire.
In spite of being soaked to the skin by the torrential rain we played lovely flowing hockey, pressuring from the whistle, running rings around Banbury, and soon earned a short corner which Leoni deftly put away on the rebound. The opposition were young and listless and we thought we’d got this game sewn up. Unfortunately our changing down a gear coincided with Banbury’s 16 young players waking up, and by half time they’d equalised and we were now on the back foot.
After the break Banbury scored again and the game gradually condensed into our own half with some desperate defending needed to keep them out. One such tackle in the D gave Banbury a penalty stroke which they put away, sending us into panic mode as we desperately tried to get the ball out of our half of the pitch. But Banbury continued to press us, and their 4th goal was a reverse stick strike which Alex Danson would have been proud of.
Scorer: Leoni Baker
Match report by Emma Forrester