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Raiders forward Ayliffe says strong team effort inspired game-winner over Streatham

PUBLISHED: 13:00 14 December 2017

Brandon Ayliffe celebrates netting the winning goal for London Raiders against Streatham (pic John Scott)

Brandon Ayliffe celebrates netting the winning goal for London Raiders against Streatham (pic John Scott)

Archant

London Raiders forward Brandon Ayliffe puts his game winner down to team work in their 3-2 victory against Streatham IHC last weekend.

The Lee Valley-based club moved up to fifth in the National League table after sealing the two points at Lee Valley on Saturday.

Ayliffe’s third-period goal proved decisive as Raiders ended the visitor’s five-match winning run, ahead of a scheduled trip to leaders Peterborough Phantoms on Sunday, which ended up being postponed due to snow and weather conditions.

“A win against Streatham is brilliant. We’re achieving our goals as the season progresses,” said the 19-year-old.

“The game-winning goal was a fantastic feeling but team work achieved that goal, it wasn’t just one man. We played hard and strong with a lot of passion as well. We’re not just a team, we are becoming more of a family.”

The former Romford junior has now taken his tally to 10 points so far this campaign, as he picked up his fourth goal of the season, adding to his existing six assists.

“I’m pleased with my performance but still a couple of tweaks that need to be done to make my game play better,” added Ayliffe.

The former England junior was also named as a reserve for the Great Britain under-20s squad which travelled up to Dumfries to compete in the World Championships Division Two Group A this week.

“Being named as reserve for GB under-20s is still an honour either way,” he said. “I haven’t been watching the games, but I have heard that they’re doing well.”

Raiders were meant to travel to Peterborugh on Sunday and Ayliffe revealed it was frustrating the match was cancelled after his side picked up a shock 6-3 victory the last time they made the trip, adding: “It was frustrating because we were all ready for a long hard game of hockey.”

Raiders will now turn their attention to back-to-back games against strugglers Invicta Dynamos before a two-week break for Christmas.

Raiders host the action on Saturday (5.30pm) and travel to Gillingham on Sunday (5.15pm) and Ayliffe expects four points.

He added: “My expectations for these games is two wins but a long, hard battle. Invicta always come out hard and we just need to jump on them, put the puck in the net and shut them down.”

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