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Under 16 County Hockey

The first match was against Desborough. Eton made a good start and played flowing hockey creating many opportunites – including aggravating misses from Acland, Hayes and Sasada. Despite the dominance Eton failed to score and the result : a frustrating nil all draw.
Nevertheless confidence was high in the next game against Reading School where we played some of our best hockey, nullifying their main threat – a South of England player. The first goal was an accurate strike from Graham on the edge of the ‘D’. This was quickly followed by two deflected goals from Sasada - the tournament’s top goal scorer.
The three-nil result gave us momentum going into our toughest match against Wellington – the favourites for the competition. The strong side which beat us earlier in the season were shocked to find themselves one nil down after five minutes thanks to a goal from a short corner from Sasada. We went on to score another goal (Sassada once again) and  put a lot of pressure on Wellington’s defence.
Bradfield were next: early lapses in concentration enabled them to score a cheap first goal. Eton played disappointingly considering the brilliant win against Wellington and we found ourselves two-one down with fifteen seconds to play after a superb strike which went in off Thurston’s helmet. At this point we managed to win a short corner. The pressure rose, if we scored we were through to the Regional Finals, if we lost we were out. Luckily, the poorly worked short corner was squeezed in thanks to great determination from Sasada – his fifth goal of the tournament.
We were ecstatic to have qualified, especially in such dramatic circumstances. Especially noteworthy are Lello and Manton-Jones  who are from the year below. With a thoroughly good team spirit  it was a brilliant day and a great result.  
Acland (PBS)
DATE POSTED: 07 February 2010

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