East London Hockey Club reflects on fine start

East London Hockey Club will be chasing no fewer than six titles in 2013

East London Hockey Club will be chasing no fewer than six titles in 2013 - Credit: Archant

Snow and frozen pitches wiped out all East London Hockey Club fixtures last weekend, leaving their six men’s teams and five women’s sides to reflect on a hugely successful first half of a season.

The Mile End club will be chasing no fewer than six titles in 2013.

The men’s first team are unbeaten so far this season and six points clear at the top of the East Division Three South East table – a comfortable margin they will want to extend as they push for the title and promotion.

Solid passing play, a healthy tally of goals from striker Adam Lord and a never-say-die attitude has given captain Adam Willoughby a dream start to his first season in charge.

The men’s second and third XIs both compete in Division Four, but have so far experienced differing fortunes.

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The seconds are in a promising fifth position, whereas the thirds are at risk of relegation. The closing games this spring could prove key for both sides, but for vastly different reasons.

The fourth XI are currently third in Division Six, only five points behind table-topping Havering thirds, and will look to rein in the leaders with the hope, at the very least, of securing a second successive promotion.

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Also looking for a second winning season in a row is the club’s fifth XI, who have made short work of defeating every side they have faced this year in Division Eight.

After 11 successive wins, they have a six-point lead over nearest rivals Southend and already look a good bet to extend their unbeaten run to two full seasons.

The newly-established sixth XI, created to cope with the massive influx of new players the club has experienced over the last two years, is holding a steady mid-table position in Division Nine.

Captain and club president Roger Lilleystone will look to build on that fine start and improve the team’s consistency over the final games of the year.

As for the women, the first team have risen to their challenge since promotion to East Two South West.

The team, captained by Sarah Ruthe, has faced some strong opposition, but racked up eight wins, with three draws and three losses and are currently in fifth place.

Meanwhile, the second XI has steamrollered everyone in Essex League Division One.

Sammy Jones’ side are top of the league after 10 wins in a row, racking up an almighty total of 104 goals, and look certain to secure promotion.

With six games remaining they will be aiming to keep the goals coming to seal the top spot.

The third XI are in third position, with a game in hand and will be looking to keep up their red-hot form and snatch a promotion spot.

The newly-formed fourth and fifth XIs have played one inter-club derby match so far, won by the higher team, leaving their rivals keen to seek revenge in the return leg.

The fourths are currently second in in Division Five, while the fifths sit bottom of the table, with a pair of wins from 12 matches to date.

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