TEAMS TO COMPETE IN THE 2019 TROPHY SEMI-FINALS ANNOUNCED!
After an eventful weekend, thankfully not ruined by Storm Callum, Hockey Wales’ Jane Price shares the excitement of the 2018 Women’s Trophy Pools.
A huge congratulations to Cardiff & Met 3rds, Llandysul 1sts, Newcastle Emlyn 1sts and Whitchurch Saints 3rds, all of whom qualified for the Hockey Wales Trophy semi-finals to be played in Cardiff on 6th – 7th April 2019. The Trophy is the middle tier of the National Cup Competitions, which saw 14 teams from South Wales league divisions 1, 2 and 3 together with Bangor University from North Wales Division 2, competing for semi-final places.
7 teams played in a round robin pool in the morning with the top 2 teams qualifying for the semi-finals. With matches only 12 minutes one way, teams didn’t have long to score goals resulting in just under half of the matches finishing 0 – 0.
The afternoon saw 8 teams play, across two pools of 4, with the pool winners qualifying for the semi-finals. Matches in the afternoon were 13 minutes each way, so teams had longer to score, but we still had one 0 – 0 result! If the urgency of all matches transfers to next week’s league matches we will see a flurry of goals throughout the divisions!
Cardiff & Met 3rds were the first team to find the back of the net and finished top of the pool. Newcastle Emlyn 1sts were the second team to score and finished second in the pool. Swansea 5ths were the third team to score and finished third in the pool.
Llandysul 1sts topped the group having won all 3 of their matches. The Cardiff University 3rds v Penarth 3rds match was always going to be interesting with both teams having won one match and lost one match before meeting each other. It was Cardiff University 3rds who took the game, securing a 2 – 1 victory.
The tightest pool of the day, with the results of the final pair of matches, determining who would qualify – Bangor University 1sts and Whitchurch Saints 3rds had 4 points each, with Bangor having a slightly better goal difference. Cardiff University 4ths had 3 points but if they beat Bangor University and Saints drew with Cardiff & Met 4ths they would qualify. At half-time Saints were 0 – 0 against Cardiff & Met and Cardiff University were relishing being 2 – 1 up against Bangor so it looked as if Cardiff University 4ths would qualify, but “it ain’t over until the fat lady sings” as they say and with the final results being Whitchurch Saints 3rds 1 – 0, Cardiff & Met 4ths and Bangor University 1sts 2 – 2 Cardiff University 4ths, it was Whitchurch Saints who topped the group!
All teams provided umpires and matches were played in excellent spirit, when umpires were asked if teams were behaving themselves, the umpires all responded with a resounding “YES – no problems”. We even had some Ask the Umpire discussions where we can clear up some doubt by confirming the FIH Rules of Hockey advise – 12.3d “A penalty corner is awarded when the ball becomes lodged in a player’s clothing or equipment while in the circle they are defending” and 9.14 “Players must not intentionally enter the goal their opponents are defending or run behind either goal” – I wonder what queries we will have next time!
Thanks to Anita, Chris and Kevin in the cafe for keeping us fed and watered throughout the day and to Chris and Andrew, Swansea Sports Village Hockey and Athletics centre, for looking after us! Many thanks to all participants but especially Bangor University, Llandysul and Newcastle Emlyn who all refused to let Storm Callum deny them a tournament in sunny Swansea – you will never appreciate how pleased I was to see you all there!
Diolch yn Fawr iawn a lwc mawr y tymor hwn.