Portsmouth lift curtain on new hockey era with away victory
Portsmouth lifted the curtain on a new era with an impressive away win in Hampshire & Surrey Regional Division 2.
The club were playing their first league fixture following the merger of City of Portsmouth and Portsmouth & Southsea.
And they recovered from a nervous start to come from behind and record a 4-1 success at Camberley.
After conceding a 14th minute opener, Portsmouth rallied well and 10 minutes before the break converted their fourth penalty corner of the half - Niall Gray smashing the ball in.
A slight shuffle of personnel by coach Chris Wimshurst to solve some teething issues saw a steady start to the second half.
After 10 minutes, Portsmouth were awarded another penalty corner. This time Camberley had covered the threat posed by Gray on the left but failed to cover the straight strike option and Pete Hayward struck.
Constant Portsmouth pressure resulted in Stuart Avery extending their lead, and the same player then beat two defenders before teeing up Freddie Steel for a fourth with five minutes left.
Ben Hayward struck a consolation as the men’s 2nds were beaten 4-1 at home by Fleet & Ewshot.
Man of the match was awarded to David Johns on his first competitive fixture since coming out of retirement.
It was a similar tale for the men’s 3rds who were also beaten 4-1 by Fleet & Ewshot 2nds.
Paul Barnes set up Tom Hughes to net for Portsmouth, who were three down at the time, with Theo Simpson awarded the man of the match award.
Alan Ball grabbed a hat-trick as the men’s 4ths defeated Alton 5ths 4-3, with Alan Duffy also scoring in addition to collecting the man of the match award.
Martin King struck twice in the first half as the men’s 5ths defeated visiting Salisbury 3-1.
Colin Brown and Gary Bull dominated the midfield with Jamie Moore impressive at the back.
After Salisbury had netted in the second half, a wonderful piece of two-touch hockey from one end to the other resulted in Callum Gaskin completing Portsmouth’s scoring
The men’s vets XI were delighted with a 1-1 draw at Bournemouth.
Co-captains Mark Wilson and Tim Schofield elected to put five players in midfield and it was the central trio of Schofield, man of the match Adam Harley and Karl Young who controlled the pace of the game.
Midway through the first half Schofield drove down the right wing and set up John Pratt to apply his trademark finish from six inches.
Bournemouth deservedly equalised in the second half and keeper Chris Lawrence made some terrific late saves to ensure Portsmouth avoided defeat.