Hockey: Tunbridge Wells made to wait for title after losing 11-goal thriller

Hockey: Tunbridge Wells made to wait for title after losing 11-goal thriller

TUNBRIDGE WELLS knew that a win over Gore Court at Tonbridge School might hand them the title in South League Kent and Sussex Regional Division One.

But despite going three up in the first quarter of an hour, they were pipped in what proved to be a thrilling 11-goal contest.

Ben Allberry netted the first goal inside three minutes, and soon afterwards a great team move resulted in Ben Brandt laying it on a plate for Callum Wood to tap in.

Then an unconventional short corner resulted in Allberry netting his second following a deflection from David Judge, and the hosts had already raced into a 3-0 lead.

But two breakaways, two defensive turnovers and a well-taken short corner saw Gore Court go 5-3 up before half-time.

After this wake-up call Wells responded quickly, building up pressure again. A trademark Allberry reverse went through the keeper to make it 5-4.

Another defensive error saw Gore Court win the ball in the D and finish ruthlessly to take it to 6-4.

Callum Wood eventually put Wells within one strike of equalising after unrelenting pressure and possession in the Gore Court half.

But with resolute defending Gore Court hung on to win 6-5, with the more clinical and ruthless side on the day coming out victorious.

Despite the defeat, Wells can now win the league next week away at Ashford, the day before a home cup semi-final against Canterbury.

All support will be hugely appreciated for a rematch of last year’s semi-final, and Wells hope to exact some revenge for that last-minute defeat.

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