Fareham win indoor South qualifier

Have your say

Ben Barnes was pleased Fareham qualified for the next round of the Indoor Hockey 5s Championship but admits they will need to improve to progress any further.

The Henry Cort Community College-based outfit were unbeaten, winning four of their five games in Saturday’s south qualifying round at Fleming Park.

Fareham will now return to the Eastleigh venue for division two south on January 10-11.

Performance director Barnes said: ‘I’m very pleased to have qualified for the next round of the south indoor.

‘It was a job well done. Having missed out last year we really wanted to get through this season.

‘The most important thing was to get off to a strong start which we did against Milton Keynes.

‘We were guilty of being complacent against Trojans, letting our intensity drop, but responded very well in the following games to qualify comfortably.’

The National League conference west outdoor side eased past Milton Keynes 8-2 in the opening match but were held to a 4-4 draw by Trojans.

However, they bounced back well to beat Brighton 3-0 and Eastbourne 6-2 before dispatching Woking 6-4 in a thrilling final encounter.

Barnes was forced to make several changes from the squad who won the Hampshire qualifiers.

However, despite missing the likes of Luke Cornish, Danny and Jamie Rawlings, Josh Godfrey and Jonathan Potts, Fareham produced some excellent performances that will stand them in good stead for the next round.

George Harris, Rob Wilson, James Seager and John Price were all in the squad at the weekend and Barnes is expecting players to return for next month’s competition.

He said: ‘We know we need to improve at the next round and we will have other players available for selection who could not make this weekend due to work and international commitments, which will strengthen the team.

‘It finishes off this half of the season really well.

‘It’s not easy to switch to indoor mode but I felt we were very quick to adapt.

‘We can enjoy the Christmas break having had a strong outdoor programme and now winning the south indoor qualifier gives us a platform to push on in the new year.’